What's the difference between "A-stock" and "B-stock"?

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“A-stock” is the term for most of the products we see on retail shelves as consumers. If that A-stock doesn’t sell well or it reaches obsolescence, then it is often transferred to secondary markets to be sold as off-price or closeout goods. Products that transition to these channels are referred to as “B-Stock.”


"A" stock is normal, brand new goods. "B" Stock is when a manufacturer manufacturers something that isn't perfect. The items are still new but have some sort of blemish. This term is most often used in the categories of clothing and housewares, especially tabletop (dinnerware).

"B" stock would technically be a closeout item since the manufacturer wants to get rid of it but the real definition of closeouts is the off price selling of "A" stock - not "B" stock.

All the best,

John T Clark

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