Summary of Why Competitive Advantages Die

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The American retail giant Sears was once the largest retailer in the world. Numerous business experts and commentators have weighed in to explain the company’s decline. Investor and business columnist Morgan Housel argues that although Sears’s downfall was stunning, the factors that caused it were more mundane. getAbstract recommends his short blog post to every business leader who wants to avoid the mistakes that bring down many once-successful enterprises.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why companies lose their competitive advantage and
  • Why certain factors precipitating the downfall of a company are beyond the control of company leaders. 

About the Author

Morgan Housel is a partner at Collaborative Fund and a former columnist at The Motley Fool and The Wall Street Journal.



The sudden decline of Sears, once the world’s largest retailer, fits a pattern that afflicts many once-successful endeavors – be it a business, career or investment strategy. People are usually quick to blame the usual suspects – competition and incompetence – when things fail, yet the following factors are often at play as well:

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