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Stealing From The Poor

EDITOR, The Tribune.

I am writing this letter to you because I am fed up with the unscrupulous practices by merchants across the Bahamas. The stores have decided to take on the reversed philosophy of Robin Hood. In my opinion it is the perfect example of the rich stealing from the poor.

I believe that these wealthy merchants have profited from poor Bahamians long enough. Why are merchants being allowed to price their goods in pennies? Does the new government regulation on the discontinued use of pennies only apply to the consumers and not the merchants? One can only conclude that price gouging during a state of emergency has become a legal practice in the Bahamas. We need an Amendment to the Price Control Act and the Consumer Protection Act. It should be against the law to price goods in pennies when the consumers are no longer allowed to use pennies.

I urge all residents and Bahamians to read the Bahamas Government laws on Price Control and Consumer protection and you will see why they must be amended because of the discontinued use of pennies. I am also asking all consumers to file complaints with the Consumer Affairs office in Nassau at 356-9391/5 and the Office of the Prime Minister in Freeport, G.B. at 352-3414 if you discover any merchant pricing goods in pennies.

While waiting on our government officials to reply to you and correct this wrong-doing, I suggest that consumers do the following:

Boycott the grocery stores that price their items in pennies instead of rounding off to five and 10 cents.

Only support the grocery stores that are not pricing their items in pennies.

When you receive a total that exceeds an amount in silver coins such as 5 and 10 cents, only pay the change in silver that is rounded below the penny amount. For example, if your total is $8. 63 cents; pay $8.60 cents and if they do not accept it leave the items there and go to another store.

This is highway robbery and these merchants and retailers must be made to discontinue this practice. If the government officials do not put a stop to this practice immediately, the only thing I have left to say to consumers is; “The General Election is in less than four weeks!”

A CONCERNED

BAHAMIAN CITIZEN

Nassau,

August 19, 2021.

Comments

Dawes 3 months ago

They are doing what the law states. What you suggest is illegal. I assume you have never had an issue when they round down (per the law this is what must happen, if they don't they are breaking the law). At the same time there are times they round up. if you pay be credit/debit card then there is no rounding. I suggest for the next month you keep a tally of when they round down and when they round up on you. At a guess the maximum difference will be around $0.10 either in your favor or the merchants. Based on your idea to have everything rounded, you obviously want to pay a lot more (most items are priced at $0.99) when you shop, which seems silly.

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bcitizen 3 months ago

It is pretty much impossible to price items without pennies because of the 12% VAT that must be included in the display price. Getting rid of the penny has cost nothing but, a little more inflation and I am sure there is defiantly a small GDP hit because, of increased accounting issues that business face if they want their books ship shape and while it may seem small it all adds up with productivity loses and increased costs.

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ohdrap4 3 months ago

Will not make much of a difference

Example: 1.02 plus 1.28 = 2.30 pay 2.30

Rounding each item: 1.00+1.30=2.30 pay 2.30

Example 2 : 1.02+1.31 = 2.33 pay 2.35

Rounding each item : 1.00+1.30= 2.30 pay 2.30

Example 3 1.04+1.34= 2.38 pay 2.40

Rounding each item 1.05+2.35 = 2.40 pay 2.40

Sometimes you pay more and sometimes less, so averages to zero.

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