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The Ecuador Chronicles - 2010-42

Amparo Piedad Rodriguez Lara de Guillory Visits Hampton Ga;
                                             A lot of Socializing and a Lot of Shopping;
                                                                      Arbitrage - An Economic Concept
by Ray Almand
Amparo Piedad Rodriguez Lara de Guillory, wife of Live Well Ecuador Principal Mathieu Guillory, recently visited us at our Hampton, Ga home.  This was only Amparo's second visit to the States.  She had been to Louisiana to visit Matt's family years earlier.  This time she came on her own - leaving Matt with their three children to fend for themselves.  I am happy to report right here that Matt and the children survived!
Amparo came to visit with us - and to do some serious shopping.  The day Amparo arrived we had a party in her honor - Barbeque pork chops on the grill, potato slald, baked beans and a bunch of other stuff.  Inside and outside, and a lot of conversation - Spanish and English - and Music - Spanish and English.
Early Morning Arrival at the Atlanta Airport - Dalynda meets Amparo
A Cool Fall Night - Great for a Party on the Patio
Arbitrage - Why an Ecuadorian would Shop in America
After the party came the shopping, which for some people (not me) is also a social activity.  Here at Live Well Ecuador we emphasize the benefits, including the economic, of living in Ecuador.  So why would an Ecuadorian want to shop in America?  Well, the truth is some things, including clothing, are cheaper in the USA.
Arbitrage is an interesting economic concept.  According to the Wikipedia, Arbitrage is defined as "the practice of taking advantage of a price difference between two or more markets".  Many things that are big ticket expenses in the USA are much cheaper in Ecuador.  Examples of this are:
  • Real Estate - beach, mountain, city and village properties are much cheaper than something similar in the USA
    Utilities - much less expensive, in particular in the Sierra where neither heat nor air conditioning are needed
  • Property Tax - in Ecuador from less than $100 per year to maybe $200 tops - compared to thousands, even over ten thousand in the USA
  • Food - in particular when purchased in a local market
  • Medical Care - high quality care is available at prices much lower than in the USA
  • Labor - domestic help, skilled labor and professionals are much cheaper in Ecuador


At Live Well Ecuador we emphasize the importance of being sure that Ecuador is the kind of place you would enjoy living before making a decision to move there, but the economic advantages - the arbitrage - are certainly part of the equation.


Some things are cheaper in the USA - used cars and clothing come to mind.  Why is clothing cheaper - I'm not really sure, but I can make some guesses.  Most clothing these days is imported - alot from Asia.  Ecuador may have higher import duties.  Also there is not a lot of cheap used clothing for sale in Ecuador - maybe people tend to use clothes until worn out.


Whatever the reasons, Amparo came prepared to take advantage.  She had a long list of things to purchase for her own family and for friends.  She went to flea markets, good will stores, consignment shops, as well as department stores like JC Penny and Kohl's.  She bought clothing for adults, clothing for children.  It was quite a marathon and I am happy to say that I was otherwise engaged.  Dalynda and her sister Chaguita went around with Amparo and really seemed to enjoy the whole experience.  Amparo arrived with almost empty suit cases - took them back pretty much full.



Arbitrage in Practice, Not Just an Economic Theory -
Appears to be a Happy Reality
But, You do Still have to Pay
So, What is our word of the day?  Arbitrage - The Practice of taking advantage of a price difference between two or more markets.
Would You Like to Visit Ecuador and Become an Economist -