Inflation is forcing consumers into a new, ingrained frugality. They pay very close attention to prices and discounts, and are seriously changing their buying behaviour, Carrefour CEO Alexandre Bompard warns.
Deeply rooted change
Due to sky-high inflation, French consumers have adopted a fundamentally new shopping behaviour. They have become very cost-conscious: they go for the lowest prices, the best promotions and biggest discounts. Instead of fish and steak, they are going for the cheapest pork – and they are decidedly not buying organic products to save money.
This is a new, but already deeply rooted, frugality, Bompard thinks. In his opinion, this attitude will continue for a long time to come. Discussions about when inflation will peak are therefore rather pointless, the CEO said at the annual post-summer conference of the French employers’ federation Medef. In the French market, July’s inflation rate of 6.8% was the highest since measurements began in the early 1990s.
“The phenomenon is here, it is deep and it has been gaining momentum in recent weeks“, Reuters quotes Bompard. The observation is particularly significant as France took exceptionally aggressive measures to protect purchasing power, such as capping gas and electricity prices, wage increases and subsidies for the poor. But even then, consumers are apparently visibly changing their purchasing behaviour…