BNIB - Brand New In Box
UMRP - Unilateral Minimum Resale Price
While some TVs have UMRP most still have poor margins and many installers stopped selling TVs especially the lower end models. The big box stores try to make up for poor margins by pushing cables, surge protectors and extended warranties.
Exactly. I know for Best Buy if you are going to break UMRP the only reason is for open box pricing or matching another advertised offer from an authorized vendor. And, if you do break UMRP pricing you have to submit paperwork with transaction information, reason, and department manager approval.
Even UMRP tvs will have very small margins. It is very common to have small negative margins on tvs.
One industry article written by a dealer stated that they made more profit selling an $8000 dollar plasma years ago then selling 20 TVs today and the 20 TVs costs a lot more in sales time and inventory management. And consumers in general are more focused on price than ever before. Most people looking at TVs now ask 'What's the cheapest 60 inch you have?" and not what looks or sounds the best. Current company excluded.
What has happened in what is termed 'The Race to the Bottom' is manufacturers have not only cut the quality of the product but also the dealer margins to be price competitive over the years. The boutique brands may not have cut quality like general consumer electronics but many of them did cut margins. As both big box and smaller stores have closed, manufacturers are starting to realize that dealers need to make profit to stay alive and have implemented many pricing policies. So consumers that are looking for that better quality might not find the discounts they did in the past.
This applies to midrange and higher priced goods. In the low end, where you see huge discounts compared to suggested retail, that's because retailers also get huge discounts compared to wholesale. if you see a $300 MSRP item sold regularly at $150 that doesn't mean the retailer is taking a hit. It means that he bought it for $90, and the MSRP was grossly inflated to start with.
This is from my 20 year experience as buyer for a retail chain.
The Laws of Physics aren't swayed by opinion.