Ivanka Trump slashed prices of her clothing line right before the election

2 months ago by Joshua Fruhlinger in Facts, Trends
Photo by Ryan Johnson

When Donald Trump was entering the final months of his campaign in the summer of 2016 - when things started getting real and it looked like he may have a chance - it came time to clean up some Trump family optics.

One bit of that cleanup involved his daughter Ivanka Trump - now advisor to the President of the United States - and the image she was attempting to portray as a symbol of the American working woman.

It turns out that in the heat of said optical cleanup, the average price of Ivanka Trump Women's Clothing was cut - by half - at the Dillards department store chain, where she has been selling her clothing catalog for several years (and from which we have a clean data trail dating back to 2016).

In fact, on August 2, 2016, the average price of an Ivanka Trump item at Dillards was at an alltime high of $273. By August 7, that average price had dropped to $152. Today, the average price of an Ivanka Trump item at Dillards is a very working-woman-friendly $99.

To give some context, a Vanity Fair article on August 8, 2016 (the day after the massive price drop) titled, "Ivanka Trump Has Her Own 'Woman Problem' Now" begins as such:

Ivanka Trump has painstakingly positioned herself as a self-described poster child for working women. Her clothing line exudes professionalism as much as modern femininity. Her Web site has an entire section devoted to #WomenWhoWork—a hashtag and concept the brand started using two years ago.

The Ivanka Trump HQ website, where she slews her wares, describes the brand as something a busy, not-so-rich working woman might indeed turn to:

At Ivanka Trump, we're committed to helping women create the lives they want to lead.

When we launched our brand in 2011, we aimed to fill a void in the market by creating a line of chic, affordable, easy to wear pieces for modern women—those who might not have the luxury of a wardrobe change to match the many different hats they wear throughout the day.

That summer saw a slew of news about Ivanka, her image, and how she was avoiding women's issues in light of her father's questionable record on the same matters. So it would seem plausible that, at the time, a decision was made to change any potential optics that her clothing brand might bring. That decision appears to be a massive change in pricing strategy that could cut off any criticisms on the matter at the pass - before they raised any questions about the Trump family's working-class image.

After all, an average price of $273 for women's clothing is hardly working-woman friendly. $99, however, looks a heck of a lot better. If this was simply to move inventory for another season, prices would have risen back up, which never happened.

Joshua Fruhlinger

Joshua has been writing about technology, lifestyle, and business for over 20 years. He's one of the original writers and editors for Engadget, and still writes a...

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