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Inflation During Holidays Concerns Two-Thirds of American Shoppers: Poll

Newsweek 11/25/2022 Thomas Kika

With Black Friday now underway in the United States, a new poll has found that inflation is among the top concerns for American shoppers this holiday season.

The CNBC/Survey Monkey poll surveyed over 3,500 adults earlier this month about how they are feeling going into the holiday season this year. In particular, they were asked about what concerns they might have about being able to afford gifts.

Two topics that have dominated economic conversations in the last year, recession and inflation, both scored highly as worrying factors for most respondents. Around 69 percent of those surveyed said that the possibility of an impending global recession has them considering cutting back on the amount they buy this year. Scoring slightly lower, around 67 percent cited inflation as a concern and said they were worried that they would not be able to afford as much this season.

These concerns were more pronounced among respondents from lower income brackets, as well as with younger people, who are more likely to earn less. Around 78 percent of people from households earning less than $50,000 cited inflation as a concern for the holiday season, compared to 65 percent and 56 percent for those making $50,000 to $100,000 and over $100,000, respectively.

For respondents aged 18 to 34, 73 percent expressed worries over being able to afford all their items this holiday season. This was the highest of any age group, with 69 percent of respondents aged 34-65 and 55 percent of those over 65 expressing similar views.

"Amid record-high inflation and recession concerns, some are cutting back," the report stated. "[Thirty-nine percent] say they plan to spend less on holiday gifts this season, up slightly from 36 [percent] last year. Just 14 [percent] say they plan to spend more this season while 44 [percent] say they'll spend about the same as last year."

While concerns still mount for everyday consumers, there has been some indication in the last month that inflation in the U.S. is easing. On Sunday, the Financial Times reported that the U.S. dollar fell 4 percent in value in November compared to several other comparable currencies, as signs point to inflation easing.

Barron's also reported on several sectors experiencing optimistic trends, including a drop in goods prices and producer costs coming in below expectations in October. While not definitive, these hopeful signs saw the stock market trend upward over the last two weeks. Analysts and leaders in several countries and regions have also indicated that recessions are unlikely in the near future.

Newsweek reached out to the White House for comment.

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