Global: Half of all consumers put off big purchases as cost-of-living crisis bites
June 7th, 2023, Kineree Shah

Global: Half of all consumers put off big purchases as cost-of-living crisis bites

A recent YouGov survey reveals global attitudes towards major purchases amid rising living costs. Globally, half of all consumers say that they have postponed big-ticket purchases such as a car or house because of these economic pressures, while only a fifth say that they haven’t (21%).

Nonetheless, the proportion of those whose purchase plans have been disrupted by the cost of living fluctuates significantly by market. In the APAC region, there is a notably stronger inclination towards postponement. Almost two-thirds of consumers in Indonesia (63%) and just over three-fifths in the UAE (60%) indicate they have delayed significant purchases. Similarly, more than half in India (57%), Singapore (53%), China (51%), and Australia (53%) concur. Notably, a third of consumers in China (32%) and Hong Kong (33%) are unsure, showing the highest level of indecisiveness across all markets surveyed.

Europe displays a mixed response. More than half of consumers in Italy (57%) and France (51%) have deferred large purchases in light of the squeeze in their finances. In contrast, Germany (38%), Denmark (40%), and Sweden (41%) demonstrate a higher proportion of disagreement than agreement. Almost two out of every five consumers in these three markets say they haven’t postponed large purchases as a result of the cost-of-living surge. Poland (54%) and Spain (45%) are roughly in the middle, with about two out of every five consumers saying they have delayed making a big-ticket purchase because of the cost-of-living crisis.

When we look at North America, half of consumers in the US (50%) and Canada (54%) say they have delayed. A quarter of consumers in these markets remain neutral (22-24%). Mexico, however, presents the highest agreement level in North America, with nearly two-thirds of consumers postponing big purchases in light of inflation (62%).

From this data, it appears that rising costs of living are influencing purchasing decisions on a global scale. However, a significant portion of consumers, particularly in Asian markets like China and Hong Kong, remain undecided about its effect. Moreover, certain European countries such as Germany, Sweden, and Denmark demonstrate a tendency to continue with significant purchases despite the challenging economic environment.

Explore our living data – for free

To receive monthly insights into the financial services industry, register here.

To read YouGov’s latest intelligence on the finance industry explore here.

Make smarter business decisions with better intelligence. Understand exactly what your audience is thinking by leveraging our panel of 20 million+ members. Speak with us today.

Methodology - YouGov Surveys: Serviced provide quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. The data is based on surveys of adults aged 18+ years in 18 markets with sample sizes varying between 512 and 2034 for each market. All surveys were conducted online in February 2023. Data from each market uses a nationally representative sample apart from Mexico and India, which use urban representative samples, and Indonesia and Hong Kong, which use online representative samples. Learn more about YouGov Surveys: Serviced.

Photo by RDNE Stock project on Pexels