Necessities, “sanity savings” and pent-up demand: how inflation is influencing consumer habits

The conflation of the COVID-19 pandemic and geopolitical conflict has caused the economy to hit inflationary spikes not seen since 1982. Though customers are looking to save, they continue to place premiums on necessities.

Consumer spending remains largely stable as inflation rises, but a mix of pent-up demand from COVID-19 and diverse behavior among people with different income levels is complicating the deeper picture.

“Nobody has any consensus on this, but the big shape [to consider] here has been COVID,” Derek Stubbs, Senior Director Analyst at insights provider Gartner, explained on a webinar entitled ‘Top Inflation Concerns for 2022 and Beyond’.