The Financial Column

Aug 27, 2012
581
234
73
London, UK
www.macrophotofly.com
#1
For those who haven't spotted the JPY/GBP FX rate is now north of 171. The Euro is also hitting new highs vs JPY.
The UK/European website route for bike parts may be fast becoming last years game (unless local retailers are also forced to increase prices at the same rate).

I had a quick check on some well known UK websites (lets call them "W" & "C" purely to elicit a comment from HFM) to see how they were handling the conversion and fast moving FX rate (a repeat of something I did two years ago when I first ordered).
Both "remove the 20%" VAT*
W does it correctly, reducing their GBP price by the full 20%, but C seems to have decided at some point in the last 2 years to take a cut themselves, they are only reducing as if VAT was 14%.
FX
If you pay in JPY, C is currently converting at 174.5 - probably a similar rate to what you would get from your credit card and cheaper if your credit card also applies charges for conversion. W is at 176.4 which is a bit steep

Obviously as long as you are price-comparing the end JPY price (and not forgetting the possibility of duties at the Japan end), none of this will matter to you, but those who know their credit cards conversion rates or have access to other currency funds might want to consider their options

*(they actually also avoid EU import duties by having a distribution point in Asia - I believe either Sing or Phillippines - amusing how many of their customers are amazed by how quickly something arrives in Japan/Australia believing it has been posted from the UK!)
 
May 22, 2007
3,612
1,445
143
Kawasaki
halffastcycling.com
#2
I had a quick check on some well known UK websites (lets call them "W" & "C" purely to elicit a comment from HFM) to see how they were handling the conversion and fast moving FX rate (a repeat of something I did two years ago when I first ordered)
It's nice to see that the Mike-Baiting Season has started early this year. Considering the increasing popularity of this sport, we might see it as a demonstration event in the 2020 Hindsight Olympics.

Allow me, then. Wiggle and Chain Reaction. I don't think that you can be accused of being sakura* merely by mentioning them in an (otherwise) informative and helpful article.

Compliance notice: No value has been added to the discussion as a result of this reply.
 
Jun 6, 2013
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#3
(unless local retailers are also forced to increase prices at the same rate
LBS has told me with the weaker yen and consumption tax rise, prices come Apr will be 20% higher than a year ago for anything coming out of the EU*.

*including of course things sold by EU cos regardless of where the things were actually made.
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#4
Expect at least 8%-24% increases in April. The local supply chain must pay additional tax all the way through the gauntlet. The weak yen does allow some of the cycling specific raw materials (carbon fiber namely) to get to the fabricators at better price, but the chemicals and alloys which all come from places non-Japanese will heavily affect the end cost. Domestically Japan is still a thriving market and the local consumers will still purchase even if there are increases. And the domestic companies will actually favor domestic prices. So - what C&W are paying now for S will likely increase to service the global market more fairly. For primarily domestic resellers like me, I'm happy to see the Yen tank a bit - most of my customers are Japanese and get paid in Yen. So they have to pay more now to purchase from W&C and all the other etailers. Levels the field.
 

joewein

Maximum Pace
Oct 25, 2011
2,435
886
133
Setagaya, Tokyo
joewein.net
#5
Both "remove the 20%" VAT*
W does it correctly, reducing their GBP price by the full 20%, but C seems to have decided at some point in the last 2 years to take a cut themselves, they are only reducing as if VAT was 14%.
When a customer outside the EU buys from a UK supplier where the standard rate of VAT is 20%, the price should not be 20% lower than the UK domestic price including VAT would have been, as some might expect, but 16.67% (1 / 1.20 = 0.8333...). Was that how you were calculating, Warren?
 

jdd

Maximum Pace
Hardest Crash
Jul 26, 2008
2,516
641
133
Kanazawa
#6
FWIW, http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/EURJPY:CUR/chart
For those who haven't spotted the JPY/GBP FX rate is now north of 171. The Euro is also hitting new highs vs JPY.
The UK/European website route for bike parts may be fast becoming last years game (unless local retailers are also forced to increase prices at the same rate).

I had a quick check on some well known UK websites (lets call them "W" & "C" purely to elicit a comment from HFM) to see how they were handling the conversion and fast moving FX rate (a repeat of something I did two years ago when I first ordered).
Both "remove the 20%" VAT*
W does it correctly, reducing their GBP price by the full 20%, but C seems to have decided at some point in the last 2 years to take a cut themselves, they are only reducing as if VAT was 14%.
FX
If you pay in JPY, C is currently converting at 174.5 - probably a similar rate to what you would get from your credit card and cheaper if your credit card also applies charges for conversion. W is at 176.4 which is a bit steep....
I wonder how often wiggle & cr update their rates--in view of this:

http://www.xe.com/currencycharts/?from=GBP&to=JPY&view=1M
 
Aug 27, 2012
581
234
73
London, UK
www.macrophotofly.com
#9
wonder how often wiggle & cr update their rates
If they are big players then they should know roughly how much business they will do in one month with any one particular currency and do an FX Forward for the months business, allowing them to fix prices for the month ahead. Wiggle's current FX rate suggests thats what they have done for the month of January with the Yen. CR might even be shifting enough to make that worthwhile on a weekly basis and hence their currently lower FX. I'll keep an eye on it over the next few weeks and report back.
Might lead to a situation where you can play the fixing rate in your favour, but let me get some facts to back that thought up first
 

TCC

Tokyo Cycling Club
Jun 30, 2013
2,362
1,291
133
#10
I could tell you all exactly how it works, with Wiggle, but that would be out of the range of acceptable comments for an internet admin to make, so you can all keep guessing.