Hot Goods – Black Market

(This post is part of the BlogHer August challenge to post for a month with the prompt of “hot”.)  

I think that we all think of “hot goods” being stolen items and for the most part, that is true. It is a slang term and there are several other slang terms for stolen goods. There are also the following terms:



Knocked off

Fell off the back of a truck (or lorry)

Five finger discount


Hot goods are often times sold on the Black Market. Why is it called the black market?  The saying goes back to the Greeks and Romans and it refers originally to sales that take place when the markets are closed and taxes are not collected on the goods sold. The markets operated at night or “in the black”. 

Transactions that take place on the black market are illegal transactions. Interestingly there is also a grey market which is where goods are sold through legal channels but not channels intended by the original manufacturer. The white market is where the goods are sold as intended. 

In these days, our first thought of the black market may be for cell phones or Apple products. The black market has been around a long time (thus the term coming from the Greeks and Romans) and encompasses illegal drugs, prostitution, weapons sales, illegal alcohol, illegal tobacco, organs, counterfeit drugs and parts, illegal taxicabs, sales of animals and animal products, timber, and other areas.  It is estimated that the market value of the largest black markets is 1,829 BILLION DOLLARS.  ($1,829, 000,000,000). Three of the highest grossing items on the black market are counterfeit drugs ($200 Billion), prostitution ($187.7 Billion) and counterfeit electronics ($169 Billion).  (Source:

There is the annual list of most stolen cars is called NICB’s Hot Wheels. NICB stands for the National Insurance Crime Bureau. This year’s list just came out and the winners (or losers depending on your viewpoint) are

  1. Honda Accord
  2. Honda Civic
  3. Ford Pickup (full size)
  4. Chevrolet Pickup (full size)
  5. Toyota Camry
  6. Dodge Caravan
  7. Dodge Pickup (full size)
  8. Acura Integra
  9. Nissan Altima
  10. Nissan Maxima

CNN recently reported a list of 7 bizarre items that thieves love to steal. The first item on the list is interesting. The number 1 book stolen is The Bible. Other items on the list were pregnancy tests, nutella, hair extensions, high end vacuums, energy drinks and Tide detergent. I will admit to being a bit surprised when I saw Tide on the list. It seems that thieves steal Tide and then resell it to other merchants for less than the merchants would pay for it but the merchants still charge the usual price thereby making more money on the product. 

So, hot goods encompass a wide variety of items and lead to an entire underground economy. 

Thanks for reading!

About Carol Early Cooney

I love to read. I love to share my thoughts on books and hope to hear what you think also. Looking to see what books I read beyond those I write about? Check out my Goodreads!
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4 Responses to Hot Goods – Black Market

  1. I am glad to see that the car I drive is not on the list (Jeep). Those thieves must be making something with the Tide. I doubt they are worried about their dirty laundry. Interesting stuff! I’m glad you posted!

  2. Sabra Bowers says:

    Well, my car is on the list, Camry. And I am charged higher insurance rates for a Camry. 😦 This is an interesting post, Carol. Merchants buying hot tide. Who knew?

  3. I used to work for Procter & Gamble, where I ran test markets for laundry detergent, among other things. I had entire trucks of Tide test product stolen not once, but twice, and I was only in that division for a year.

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