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10
Fake Scarcities

Hey Mickey, how many DVDs do you have in the Disney Vault? That many?

© Steve Starr/CORBIS

Economics 101 teaches that much of life -- from gas station lines and international airfare rates to the price of tea in China -- is simply a matter of supply and demand. Generally speaking, low supply combined with strong demand means high price. So perhaps it comes as no shock that it's common practice in some businesses and industries to overstate the scarcity of a certain item in order to spike demand and perceived value. Just which foods, objects and intangibles are more plentiful than it seems, however, may be a little surprising.

Gas, water, chicken wings: Reports of their demise have been greatly exaggerated, at least according to some experts. Sometimes the confusion is purposely designed to peak buyers' interests; other times, it's simply a matter of media hype and the frenzy that comes with it.

Read on for a look at 10 of the most notable "fake scarcities."

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