Where to Now?

At this moment, in mid December, anyone connected with retail is wondering how the final two weeks of the 2009 Christmas season will turn out. Some retailers report progress, with the last month or two up a bit over the disastrous 2008 figures. While we cannot draw broad conclusions from anecdotal tales, we sense some stability. Confidence remains shaky, and we await an uptick in employment, but maybe, just maybe, we've passed the bottom of the recession. The real question is: Where do we go from here? This year will distinguish those who have taken on the national and global upheavals and moved ahead to take advantage of the profound changes we've witnessed and those who are frozen in place. I'm reminded of other earthquakes in our industry, all wrought by disruptive technologies. The early 1980s saw the application of grading systems into a diamond investment b

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