business news in context, analysis with attitude

A new study from The Nielsen Co. looks at the impact of rising food prices on US consumers. Excerpts:

• "Americans are feeling the pain of rising food prices, reporting the lowest percentage globally (9%) of free spending money."

• "Only 39% of Americans say they’re living 'comfortably' despite the US reporting the highest percentage (46%) of households earning an income above $50,000 compared to the global average of 22%."

• "47% of Americans say they would shop more for private label brands when food prices rise."

• "48% of Americans say they will stock up on regular-use items when they are on sale, especially unbranded cereal/grains, fruits, and vegetables ... 48% of US consumers will exclusively purchase sale price items when prices rise ... 44% of US consumers will look for deals online."

• "Rising food prices mean US consumers will cut back on dining out (68%), new clothes & accessories (56%), snacking (50%), and travel (40%)."
KC's View:
I think these numbers illustrate a bigger problem, that what at best as been a tentative recovery since the end of the recession - except among the to 10 percent of the country - appears to a house of cards that could collapse at any moment, with things not made any better by the political dysfunction in Washington, DC. And, it points out the income disparity in the US that are, to my mind, a systemic and cultural issue that undermine the nation's stability.