Nikon canceling back orders in the US

Similar to what happened in the UK last week, Nikon US is canceling all back orders until the new prices kick in on February 1st.

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  • Cliff

    All this greedy price increasing is making me want to sell all my Nikon gear to get Canon. Instead of being happy people are spending money AT ALL right now, they want to be greedy and say “it’s not enough” – screw them

    • CV

      Price increase is because the fall of the currencies of the countries compared to the Yen. Nikon isn’t making more money this way. This is simply a compensation for the falling USD.

      It’s very easy: if a government makes money out of thin air (what is happening in the US right now), then it’s currency gets a lower value.

      But if you want to sell your stuff at a loss and discover that Canon is raising prices too: go ahead.

    • Henry Nikon Fan

      No one likes price increases, but companies are in business for profit. I am sure that no company wants to increase prices in a weak economy, but companies do make decisions that they feel are best for their viability in the future. They may not always make the best or correct decision, but they do at the time with hand that they are dealt.

      • not always

        nikon isn’t in bad financial shape. they are howeve rmaking a bad decision.

        in this economy there are smart companies and short sighted companies.

        smart companies use this time to gain marketshare so that when the market recovers they can kick down the doors and roar. They entice buyers with low prices and good value.

        stupid companies, ala nikon, raise prices and lose marketshare, which in the end hurts their bottom line more.

        Then they are crushed by the competition when the market recovers because people have already invested in teh competitor’s system. Sounds like nikon and canon of the 90’s part deux.

        I guess they never learned. maybe sony will buy them and put an end to their missery once and for all.

      • Henry Nikon Fan

        In Thom Hogan’s article dated January 13, 2009, he states that there is a 27% drop in the value of the U.S. Dollar to the Japanesse Yen. He also states that he anticipates an increase in the high teens. If he is correct or even close to correct, it appears to me that Nikon is attempting to balance the new price increases with the economy. Otherwise, why wouldn’t they increase the full amount of the Dollar to Yen?

        If you are correct, and Nikon increase prices too much, they will more than likely be forced into making other concessions to capture the difference between the Dollar and the Yen. Maybe decrease production cost of products by reducing quality? I certainly hope not.

        In addition if Sony were to purchase both Nikon and Canon, I cannot see how that would help competion and continue to develop cutting edge products.

        It is interesting to read all other opinions and exchange ideas and speculation. I do very much enjoy this site.

    • PJS

      Don’t let the door hit you in the a** as you leave!

    • sperera


  • Pablov

    sad, too bad they are cancelling back orders until the new higher price…. 🙁

  • ixoye25

    nikon 200-400 vr, buy now?

  • I should be shooting

    Out comes my FM2n and AIS lenses 🙂

  • Henry Nikon Fan

    I just bought a AF-S 24-70mm lens from B&H for $1,429.95 a few weeks ago and I have just ordered the AF-S 14-24mm at $1,489.95 from B&H and selling my AF-S DX 12-24mm lens.

    I will now and wait a while to sell the AF-S DX 12-24mm lens. An attempt to buy low and sell high.

    It may be a bit of a gamble, but I have been debating this move for several months now and this may be the time.

    I hope that I am right with the others that are doing the same thing.

    I also saw this morning a new article on stating that the price increase is coming.

  • Vlad

    As many people suspected, the global trend of raising prices is due to the weak dollar, pound, euro etc, or simply said, because of the currently strong Japanese yen. I’m in Japan, and prices didn’t change a bit here.

    • Henry Nikon Fan

      Excellent comment! Nice to hear about there pricing in Japan where the Yen is valued against the Yen.

      • Lars

        B&H out of stock for D3.

      • Anonymous

        Actually, the price for the D700 at the lowest discount vendors is going UP. Around the end of the year, the price was as low as 216,000, but now it is up to 233,000 (based on listings).

  • Prices will increase, but with a weak global market selling prices will be low. This will either make the Nikons seem like a deal when everybody is selling so far under MSRP or there will be big rebates. The yen won’t be trading so high with the global economy tanking. The Japanese economy does not exist in a vacuum. Quite the opposite.

  • Stephen

    So I call this whole thing BS. The problem is Nikon wants to continue to make money hand over fist. They up their prices because they don’t want to see the falling returns and in the end shoot themselves in the foot. What they fail to see is that regardless of how much money they make, people make their decisions based on price.

    The most informative line I’ve ever heard regarding cameras was this. In reality it’s not likely than any one feature or even set of features make you choose to be a Nikon person or a Canon person. What is usually the case is that you buy whatever is the best deal at the time or is on sale and you stick with it because you are committed from that time on, my wife the psychologist informed that this is called the commitment bias.

    In times like this it is likely that local companies that do not need to increase price will take the majority of new sales. So in the end this does not effect us, the loyal Nikon users. It effects those that are just now getting into photography. These kind of actions will hit them in the long run, just to keep up a short term bottom line.

    Now, they are combating this to some extent by not increasing their bodies and kits. But who knows how long that will last.

    I understand that currencies fluctuate and change, but consider it the cost of doing business in another country. I hope beyond all hope that Nikon realizes their error and corrects it. In fact, I hope to see price drops in the next few months. Once they realize Canon can lower their prices, they realize it’s better to take a loss this year and keep gains for the next 20.

    Okay there’s my analysis.

    • dan

      I bought Nikon because it felt the best in my hands plus what accessories they make (lenses and flashes).

      Nikon was more expensive than Sony, Canon, Oly or Pentax. But I bought Nikon, price is a factor but not always the prime factor for all people. If that was the case I would have gone Pentax. SR in camera, weather sealing and use of AA batteries so no need to buy some Li-ions.

      Taking a loss now is not a smart idea, it means less coming in to keep them going. Look at Sony now, they have a loss but a company like Nintendo who does not sell at a loss is stronger.

      • Stephen

        You’re comparing apples and oranges when your talking about sony and nintendo. They are marketing two vastly different products. In fact it would be better to compare sony and microsoft. Yes there are a lot of factors that go into a purchase, but much of the time it is price. I sold consumer electronics for a few years, and no matter how you cut it, even for pro level stuff, price is what makes or breaks a sale. For you, the price was right because you paid a little more and got a whole lot more.

        So now Nikon is taking moving themselves around in the price/benefits field, and messing around with that tremendous marketshare they have worked so hard to get. And yes, having less products is better now. I would rather Nikon stop releasing products, perfect the ones they have, keep prices the same and wait it out. Once people have money to spend again, they will roar out of the gate.

        And don’t give me crap about needing new products. What we have is pretty amazing. The D80 would have sold like hotcakes for another year or two if the D90 hadn’t come along. The D90 is likely to the same, if they keep it reasonably priced. The D700 was coming down, and luckily I bought it at a low, but It’s going to be unreasonable to spend more money at this point. So in the end Nikon shoots themselves in the foot.

        I never said they need to take a loss. I only that they can cut back on their total profits. They are still profitable if they haven’t fudged their books, and if they fudged the books, they deserve to suffer.

  • Chris

    Dear Nikon,

    Having seen the prices on your DSLR’s and Lenses post-increase, I’d just like to say…


    What a joke. D700 is now £1800 from £1535. 17-55 2.8 is now £1000 from £775. 24-70 now £1200 from £1050.

    Piss takers.

    • PJS

      Last I heard there is no one forcing you to use Nikon. Take a pill and buy a Panasonic!

  • Jim D.

    For all those who are angry at Nikon for the price increase – would you be happy if they got themselves in financial trouble by losing too much money? I would rather that Nikon management take the necessary steps to remain a strong company and continue to produce the fine products I have come to trust, even if it means that a few of those items will be a little more expensive than I like in the near future. If you still need to vent about companies raising prices, I recommend you direct your ire at those who are charging more for mediocre products.

    My $0.02 worth.

    Jim D.

    • Rousseau

      It’s far from clear that this is a step that will help Nikon, though. People don’t just keep buying things in the same quantities if prices go up. It’s likely that demand for Nikon cameras is in fact fairly elastic, and increases in price will drive consumers to other brands. This seems particularly true at the non-professional levels, where price sensitivity is highest because cameras are luxury, rather than necessity, items. Does Nikon know for sure that demand for its cameras and lenses is inelastic enough to withstand price increases? We don’t know yet, and there’s no reason in the meantime to assume the price increase will help them. (And no reason not to complain, either! We’re the people who drive the market, after all.)

      • Vlad

        They really aren’t selling their stuff at higher prices – the price in yen didn’t change. What changed is the course of the other currencies towards the yen. Convert the old price with the yen course before the crisis, and the new price with the present course, and you’ll see in yen it’s all more or less the same.

        • Rousseau

          True from a macro standpoint, but small comfort for the consumer who, upon comparing prices, sees that one number is higher than the other. Prices in dollars went up, which is all that matters to a U.S. consumer who isn’t a multinational entity or an active forex trader. Just because the value of the dollar is slipping doesn’t mean Joe Consumer has any more dollars to spend.

          But realize that I’m not assigning moral blame to Nikon. Your point that price increases were necessary to recoup costs is well taken. The question is whether or not the attendant dip in marketshare associated with price increases will eliminate the gain from the increases themselves.

          (Of course, this all elides the extremely canny move, in certain markets, to raise prices only on lenses, rather than cameras. It’s likely that most entry-level consumers compare prices only of cameras, without taking future lens purchase prices into account. And that means that the price increases affect only people like us, who have already bought into the Nikon system, and whose demand is unfortunately inelastic.)

          • Stephen

            Agreed. Though I think this also has a long lasting effect on professionals. Once I was out of school and doing the photography thing as a career I went to my local professional camera store all ready to buy and olympus digital system. I had used olympus film cameras all through college and high school and that is what I wanted. Nikon price was just much more enticing. I called it bang for the buck. I have been a Nikon person for life. I did switch to a Fujifilm body for a while, but I always bought Nikon lenses, and now am back with a D700.

            A life time of purchases where based on price. As I look back on it, it was the lens cost that got me. The selection for the price was just that much better.

            I will also slow down on purchases. Likely, I’m only going to buy the 24-70 this year. That’s the thing. I see prices going down. So do most people. People are likely to slow down buying and that is going to kill Nikon. I would rather sell at high volume, with low margin and make a profit. Nikon has decided to maintain margin, thus lowering volume and in the end probably running at a lost. Hey there are overhead cost always involved.

            Nikon, I will be spending less for the next few years. I’m not leaving you, just consider it some time apart for a while.

  • ronin

    Jim, if there was any indication that Nikon held a monopolistic sway on discretionary consumer purchases, it might be able to raise prices with impunity.

    Absent that, raising prices are likely to hurt Nikon, not help it. Nikon has no pricing power because people are increasingly unable and unwilling to buy one more electronic toy- of which most of Nikon’s sales are made.

    If Nikon is financially as strong as people claim, it is not making a wise decision. On the other hand, this move smacks of desperation- we are losing sales so we will raise prices to make up margin- which will lead to lower sales, which will force us to raise prices. Rinse, repeat, and you are in a tailspin it is all but impossible to pull out of.

    • Jim D.

      It certainly doesn’t have to be an endless spiral. Many companies are choosing to downshift production to the greatest extent possible and simply sell fewer units while they ride out the storm. Quality should remain high and the company’s reputation remains intact (this absolutely is a key consideration for a company like Nikon). This is much preferable, in my opinion, to cutting corners and engaging in a ruinous price war that could leave the company in bad shape and in a poor position (or out of business altogether) when the economy does eventually improve.

      There are many assumptions on this board and elsewhere that Nikon has the wherewithal to forego this price increase. I guess I’m willing to give the company the benefit of the doubt here and suppose they are not able to absorb the currency fluctuations without severely hurting the ability to earn a reasonable profit and continue product development. Nikon has shown they are willing to jump into the consumer market and duke it out to build share – I’m going to assume that they would minimize any price increases if at possible to maintain these gains.

  • Adam

    The original post says that Nikon is CANCELLING back orders like they did in the UK. But in the UK it appears that they simply weren’t taking any NEW orders at the OLD prices for gear that was out of stock. That’s a big difference. I doubt that Nikon would be stupid enough to cancel existing orders (by Amazon, etc. and, by extension, Amazon’s customers) just to make a few more bucks on cameras that are already in the distribution pipeline. That would piss off a lot of people, including myself (I have a D90 backordered at Amazon).

    • ronin

      This is really a key point. Stopping incremental backorders is one thing.

      But canceling existing ones? Although not a hard contract, it certainly is an understanding between consumer, dealer, and vendor. Unilaterally cutting it off without excuse hurts whichever party does it.

      Who would ever want to bother to place a backorder with the vendor again, if there are other choices available now? Would love to hear how this would make troubled Nikon stronger, rather than just yet one more lumbering, heavy-handed, consumer-unfriendly move.

  • Stephen

    The problem is this effects us as Nikon users in the long run, far more than just a price increase. What they are doing is destroying their market share over the long run. This will result in less profit, and less money on R and D. You can see where I am going here. Short sighted business practices have always been the downfall of business and this is short sighted.

    You may think this has nothing to do with you except slowing down purchases, well you’ll see in the next couple of years that it’s far from true.

  • Chris

    I appreciate that Nikon are running a business – but what sort of business model drives customers to buy other, more affordable brands by raising prices 20-30% when every other industry is slashing them to pull in customers?

    My plans to buy either a D700 or 17-55 / 24-70 just went out the window. I’ll be sticking with the D300 and waiting for the review of the new Sigma 24-70.

    So, Nikon has lost a sale. I’m sure there are plenty of others who are financially sensible with no debts, and will choose to buy Sigma or Tamron over the already expensive Nikkors.

    Nikon seem to think they are a cut above when in reality the market is very, very tight. Don’t get me wrong, prices had to go up at some point with the strength of the Yen, but I think the sudden steep nature of the rise is damaging to Nikon and they risk losing market share as a result. A smaller increase now and then a re-evaluation in Q3 would have seen further inroads into Canon’s market in the short term and a better footing going into Q3 and the crucial Xmas market next year.

    Of course, the main cause of this are the idiots running the US and UK who have bent over for the finance sector and left the rest of us hung out to dry. The “free market” has been an unequivicable failure and the chickens are well and truly coming home to roost.

  • Samantha

    Here is Canada; our prices are continually going up and down for all camera gear. Our almost par to the U.S. $ one year ago put camera gear the lowest in years, our venders buy for the U.S. Now our dollar is much lower than the U.S. $ and we have seen a $150 increase in a 24-70 f2.8 lens in the last 4 months. The price increase had nothing to do with Nikon charging more. It had everything to do with our dollar value. Companies all over Canada would go bankrupt if they tried to cushion the consumers by absorbing the $ change to keep the price lower.

    The simple fact is, it cost more to purchase the product so the price HAS to be passed on to the consumer. Do I like it, NO. But our countries economy doesn’t revolve around our own dollar value. The American economy has been strong and hasn’t really felt these changes for quite some time. Unfortunately, most countries are feeling the effects of slump economies and that is not Nikon’s or any other companies fault. When the dollar values rises back up, prices will come back down.

    When I travel, I accept the currency exchange rate of that country, expecting the countries/ companies to take the fall of the difference would be absurd. I wonder, any of you Americans travel to Canada or Mexico and said, wow my $100 is worth $125 ish there and said, no thank-you, I’ll exchange at par? Things have been reasonable in your country for some time, unfortunately it will be rocky for awhile.

    I’m just saying, one needs to consider world economies too. I love my Nikon and would rejoice at lower prices. I have made a big investment and would like to Nikon here for a long time. Is it going to hurt them in the long run, maybe but I see the increase coming for the exchange, not the company and I hope consumers don’t fault them on that.

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