Consumers are spending frugally in order to manage increases in the cost of living, new data suggests.
The EY Future Consumer Index found the vast majority (94 per cent) of respondents globally said they are concerned about rising living costs, while 92 per cent of Irish respondents said they are worried about the State’s economy.
Increases in the cost of groceries, energy and fuel top consumer concerns, with many attempting to offset these increases by saving money elsewhere, including 29 per cent who said they have moved away from branded products in favour of own-brand alternatives.
One third of Irish spenders said they plan to cut back on clothes spending in order to save cash, while 44 per cent said it will be takeaway food that will suffer as the purse strings tighten.
However, the survey found that affording the essentials is also a struggle for many consumers, with rising grocery costs and ‘shrinkflation’, when products get smaller but do not reduce in price, noted by around three quarters of respondents.
“Consumers are remaining frugal and resilient to cope with cost-of-living pressures”, EY Ireland’s Colette Devey said.
“They are reporting the value they receive from brands diminishes due to price increases and in some cases shrinkflation. Consumers are responding by switching away from brands, reducing their list of essentials and cancelling subscriptions to maximise budgets.
“While many Irish households may feel that there are many factors outside their control, they should recognise that there are a number of ways in which they can take control of their spending, including exploring private label offerings, seeking to take advantage of on-the-floor and at-the-till discounts and to shop around and across channels for the best value,” Ms Devey added.