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2238, 10 Nov 15

Minimum Markup Repeal Progresses… Sort of

Wigderson has the details at Right Wisconsin.

Well, there is progress of sorts. After some embarrassment for legislative Republicans, the bill to repeal the state’s archaic minimum markup law, ironically known as the Unfair Sales Act, finally has a number and was sent out to committee. SB 371 is now going to the state Senate Committee on Economic Development and Commerce chaired by Senator Rick Gudex.
Now the question becomes whether legislative Republicans will develop a spine and allow a public hearing to be held. They will have to risk upsetting the Wisconsin Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association and the Wisconsin Grocers Association, because heaven forfend that these two special interests be made to defend the concept that higher prices are somehow good for consumers.
This law needs to be repealed. It would be a serious disappointment if the Republican legislature and the Republican governor won’t get it done.

2238, 10 November 2015


  1. Kevin Scheunemann

    Repeal now.

    It just becomes a competitive complaint system. Higher price player complains lower price player is hurting their profits.

    Democrats should be supporting this repeal in droves. If not, they are the one’s supporting wealth concentration.

  2. old baldy


    Mom and Pop versus Walmart. Who wins? You need a lesson in micro econ.

  3. Kevin Scheunemann


    Mom and Pop will never compete with Walmart on price.

    Mom and Pop need to set themselves apart through quality and service.

    Minimum markup only raises price at the Walmart in your suggested scenario.

    Why make the rich corporation richer with this law?

    If your micro economic lesson includes people paying more because lessor quality, you must be reading from the Dr. Seuss micro economic lesson book.

  4. Joey

    Three cheers for Mom & Pop and dial phones. This is 2015. Get over it.
    Price protection is price protection. Quit fighting consumer choice.

  5. Dan

    As someone who has lived in both Wisconsin with the mark up law and the normal states that don’t, it is so much nicer to have no mark up laws.
    The mom and pop stores is a stupid argument.
    Get rid of the mark up law and the consumers.
    Here in Arizona, where I live, I can pay $2.15 for a gallon of gas or $2.55 down the street.
    I can shop at Wal-Mart and deal with the lines and rude people or go to a smaller store and deal with few customers, fewer lines and maybe pay a couple bucks more and maybe better quality items.
    So, the Wisconsin government is costing consumers millions and millions of dollars a year and that sucks.

  6. old baldy


    Poor econ 101 grade for you. The buying power of Walmart allows then to buy the same package of XX for less than mom can buy it. The minimum markup is based on a %. Don’t you get your product through Dairy Queen? Is it more or less than you could buy it on the open market? If more, why are you still a DQ franchise and not an independent? You are actually in favor of wealth redistribution to the Walmarts rather than keeping in at home at Mom’s store.


    If there actually is a $ price difference for the same product, same service, that small guy won’t last a week. Guess I don’t believe you.

  7. Kevin Scheunemann


    I do get my supply for less than the independent restaurant for similar products under group system buying power. (providing we have a handle on the corporate franchisor mark-up (undisclosed royalty) through our competitive franchisee association supply chain…that is not true with all franchise systems.)

    However, minimum mark-up does not eliminate that supply buying power issue as you describe. It only fattens Walmart’s margins and still undercut mom and pop.

    Mom and pop have to realize that quality and service is their competitive advantage.

    Why are you against cheap goods for poor people?

  8. old baldy


    You proved my point exactly.

    I’m not opposed to reasonably priced goods for anyone. Why do you promote high-sugar, high-calorie, low nutrient food products for poor people?

  9. Kevin Scheunemann


    Minimum markup does not prevent buying power advantages.

    It only raises profit for the Walmart’s of the world. I know liberal policies support wealth concentration, but this is brazen support of wealth concentration.

  10. Dan

    Umm, baldy, have you ever checked out sites that show gas prices around the country.
    Otherwise, shut up you little liar.

  11. old baldy


    You really don’t read whay you write, do you?


    Yes, I do. And from the reading it appears that drastic differences as you describe can be attributed to several factors: differences in state and local taxes, level of service, % ethanol. Sometimes a regional difference appeared attributed to the distance from a pipeline, but as shown here in WI that isn’t a common occurrence. Nowhere did an apples to apples comparison show a $.40/gal difference for the same product.

  12. Dan

    Umm baldy, no difference, same city, same city block.
    Only difference is the brand of gasoline.
    You guys are suckers in Wisconsin and you are being ripped off.
    But hey, if you have the money to burn, then congratulations on being rich and elite.

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