Fetch Price Index Report Finds Consumers at a Tipping Point, Showcasing a Need For More Affordable Essentials

Consumer demand continues to flatten, while the Inflation Reduction Act aims to bring costs down

Fetch Rewards, America’s No. 1 consumer-rewards app, released its August Fetch Price Index (FPI) report. The August FPI found consumer demand is remaining soft at -0.7% year-over-year. While prices remain high, consumers cannot sustain increased strains on their budgets, and are opting for cheaper options.

The August FPI report found that consumer prices are up 12.9% this month compared to last year, slightly better than the +13.3% reported in July. The Biden administration has enacted the Inflation Reduction Act to help Americans fight inflation by investing domestically, but it remains to be seen when consumers will experience the impact of this new legislation.

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One of the key takeaways from the August FPI indicates that fast food is stealing wallet shares from restaurants, raising by 3.4% last month. Prices are causing fewer items to be purchased per household, and when not eating at home consumers are choosing cheaper fast food options rather than full-service restaurants.

“Amidst elevated prices, consumers are evaluating their needs more strictly than ever,” said Wes Schroll, Fetch Rewards Founder and CEO. “It’s essential for brands and retailers to understand that consumers are at a tipping point in terms of how much more they can cut back, and this trend will continue to force households to reevaluate their shopping carts.”

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The Fetch Price Index report is calculated using Fetch Rewards’ proprietary 24-month user panel ending August 2022. The panel comprised 442,435 users who snapped receipts for 24 consecutive months (August 2020-August 2022). A continuous shopper panel allows for year-over-year comparison and adjusts for Fetch Rewards’ user growth, reflecting true change in shopper behavior. Panel users contributed 242 million receipts across the reporting time range.

The Fetch Price Index report was created to provide further context to the findings that are published monthly in the Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index report. By reviewing shopper behavior at an item level, Fetch can capture, in real-time, the actual state of inflation and the impact on consumers, retailers, and brands. The report is published monthly on the Fetch Rewards blog, Unleashed.

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