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Consumer Inflation Remains High, New Research Issues Strong Warning for the Christmas Season

Updated: Oct 13, 2023

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released the Consumer Price Index for September this morning and it showed that over the last year, all items index increased 3.7% prior to seasonal adjustment. This comes on the heels of the Producer Price Index, which confirmed what the Freedom Economy Index showed in September: inflation isn’t going away.

The September survey of a universe of over 65,000 small business owners, a joint project of PublicSq. and RedBalloon.work, found that 84% of respondents strongly disagreed that “inflation has calmed and is no longer an issue for me or my business.”

Additionally, 93.9% “strongly agreed” that “families and consumers are still hurting from inflation.” And 32% believe the coming Christmas season’s sales will be somewhat less than average, with 52% saying much less.

“Consumer spending is going to decrease due to the sustained high rates of inflation,” Andrew Crapuchettes, RedBalloon CEO, said. “This is going to impact Christmas economic activity, which usually boosts our economy and small businesses in the last quarter. This is one of the reasons why we had a 15% spike month-over-month in business owners who believe that the US is heading into a recession.”

Heading into the 2023 holiday season, the Freedom Economy is wary of inflation due to runaway government spending and preparing for a full-scale ‘nightmare before Christmas’ during the fourth quarter. If the Biden Administration doesn’t want to be labeled as the Grinch who stole Christmas this year, then action needs to be taken - and fast.

Methodology:

The September 2023 Freedom Economy Index, a joint project of PublicSq. and RedBalloon, sampled a universe of over 60,000 small businesses from September 25-29, with 1,126 respondents and a 3% margin of error at the 95% confidence level.

Download the full September report here.

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