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Consumer Electronics Prices Ease in March
May 20, 2004
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Prices of popular U.S. consumer electronics devices fell slightly in March as declines in DVD players and digital cameras outweighed gains in notebook computers, according to an industry study prepared for Reuters.

According to NPD Consumer Electronics Price Watch, the price for a market basket of the 27 most popular electronics goods fell to U.S. $13,010 in March, down 1.1 percent from February.

NPD analyst Stephen Baker said price declines typically moderate in the spring since there are few opportunities for large discounting, in contrast with the winter holiday and back-to-school seasons, when demand for electronics devices is exceptionally strong.

Prices for portable media devices, including portable DVD players, slipped 6.4 percent in March to an average of $255, and portable CD players fell 8.2 percent to about $34, NPD said. Prices of 20-G, hard-drive-based portable digital music devices, such as Apple Computer Inc.'s iPod, fell only about 1.8 percent to $325.

Consumers shopping for large-screen TVs, one of the most popular gift items during the 2003 holiday season, found only moderate bargains for rear-projection models, which fell 1.6 percent from February, and plasma TVs, which fell $100 to about $2,900.

NPD said prices of most types of computers slipped from February, as did digital cameras, "flash" memory cards, and computer hard drives; all were down more than 5 percent.

The declines were offset somewhat by a jump of more than $50, or about 5 percent, in prices of notebook computers with 15-in screens, which were pegged at $1,231 by NPD. (Reuters)

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