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2011 is working out to be an expensive year for many consumers, at least on the automotive front. Even car stereo prices, which have already risen since the start of the year, are set to jump further.
The increase is blamed partly on supply issues in Japan, resulting from the earthquake and Tsunami, as well as the increasing cost of rare earth metals like copper and aluminum, used in component manufacturing for stereo systems.
In addition, currency fluctuations are also having an impact; the Japanese Yen for example is down considerably as is the Chinese Yuan. One Japanese based supplier said “if the Yen holds at 79 (down from 90) you can expect more price increases.”
Some car stereo manufacturers have been responding to the hikes, by increasing retail prices, including Rockford Fosgate and JL Audio. Even those that are currently holding steady, will likely increase their prices by the final quarter this year or in early 2012, by as much as 10 percent.
[Source: CE Outlook]