I have always wondered why prices ends with 99s, but never really remembered the question long enough to search for the answer, until I read this article.
Which is smaller: 298,548 or 298,000? If you picked 298,548, you’re not alone. That’s the ol’ precision heuristic in price magnitude judgments doing its thing.
I have always thought that they are just trying to make the price ‘sounds’ lower than it is by reducing it by 1. To say ‘300 something’ for a product priced at 399 surely sounds cheaper than ‘400 bucks’!
Need an example? Here’s a very good one:
Here’s another theory to the same question.
It started at Bill’s Texaco in Waco, Texas during a price war. I say it’s a much older management technique to force employees to open cash register drawers for each transaction (making simply pocketing a bill more obvious).
You can read a couple more at The Sraight Dope if you’re interested. Unfortunately, trying to find out who invented it is like trying to find out who invented the hat.
Where in the world can I get these guys in Malaysia?