Buying behavior in countries hard hit by COVID-19 still focused on essential purchases only

The majority of consumers around the world are purchasing only as much as they intend to consume in the near future, according to GlobalData’s Consumer Purchasing Behavior Tracker. Over 50% of consumers in all but three of the 11 countries surveyed indicated they were only focusing on immediate needs.

Ben Carey-Evans, Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Consumers around the world are concerned about personal finances and potential job losses, and are consequently prioritizing immediate and essential purchasing.”

Chinese consumers are the most likely to look beyond the immediate future, and potentially even buy more products than previously. This is likely because they are further along in the pandemic and are closer to normality than other countries. In China, 25.1% of females and 24.9% of males are buying more products than they intend to consume in the foreseeable future, showing that consumers will begin spending again in other countries as the pandemic cycle progresses.

In the UK, the US, Brazil and Sweden on the other hand, four countries still very much struggling with COVID-19, consumers are far more likely to just plan for the immediate future. This is likely to be due to uncertainty surrounding the lockdown and financial uncertainty caused by job losses.

Carey-Evans adds: “Only 5.4% of females and 6% of males in the UK are buying more products than they intend to consume in the foreseeable future. This highlights the financial uncertainty in the country and emphasizes the struggle retailers face in the coming months.”

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