The city of Poway just had a grand opening for a 99 Cents Only store within the last week. Naturally because it’s new in town I decided to check it out. However, one of the things I noticed that wasn’t blatantly obvious was a sign indicating that due to inflation, prices were now no longer 99 cents, but rather 99.99 cents. This carrying out the nines to two more decimal places essentially transforms the prices into $1.00 per item and you’d have to actually purchase 51 ones before you get one at 99 cents.
To me, this reeks of false advertising. The stores are called 99 Cents Only stores, and they’re flat out lying. The business was built on the premise that nothing in the stores would cost more than 99 cents. And according to their press release about the change, they managed to keep that true for slightly more than twenty-five years since the company was founded in 1982 until they opted to change it in late 2008. I’m not sure if they were the first company to start on the premise of charging 99 cents, but obviously others followed but decided to go for the dollar instead of losing an additional penny per item. This price increase does effectively make the 99 cent stores the same as the dollar stores, except for the fact they’ve got that problem that their name specifically states 99 Cents “Only.”