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More than a fifth say shopping for family to be a major expense this festive season: Survey


NEW DELHI: Consumer sentiment in India seems to be on an upswing, with discretionary spends seen rising this festival season, according to a survey. Axis My India, a consumer data intelligence company, released its India Consumer Sentiment Index (CSI), a monthly analysis of consumer perception on a wide range of issues.

The October report reveals that sentiments have improved across one out of five relevant sub-indices i.e., spends across discretionary products. As a result, 44% plan to buy apparel during Dusshera/Diwali while 8% each plan to buy white good and mobile phone and 8% plan to buy either a 2-wheeler or 4-wheeler. The survey also said that about 81% believe that shopping for family will be the ‘major expense’ this featival season.

The October net CSI score stood at 8 compared with from 10 last month, reflecting a fall of 2 points.

The sentiment analysis delves into five relevant sub-indices – overall household spending, spending on essential and non-essential items, spending on healthcare, media consumption habits & mobility trends.

The survey was carried among a sample size of 10058 people across 32 states and UTs. About 67% of respondents belonged to rural India, while 37% belonged to urban counterparts. An estimated 61% of respondents were male, while 39% were female

Pradeep Gupta, chairman & MD, Axis My India, said “Increase in discretionary spends across households demarcates the continuity of festive sentiments. From visiting physical stores to scanning through online sites, consumers are not only investing on household products but are also splurging for themselves and their families. However, one can witness the spending capacity to be conscious as the expenses are mostly on low budget items such as clothes as compared to heavy ticket items such as vehicles or properties. Cash though continues to be the king, digital modes of payment like UPI & debit/credit card usage is also growing rapidly.”

Key findings:

Overall household spending has increased for 58% of families which reflects a decrease by 3% points from last month. The net score which was +53 last month has decreased by -4 to +49 this month.

Spends on essentials like personal care & household items has increased for 44% of the families which is a decrease by 2% points from last month. The net score which was at +29 last month has decreased by -3 to +26 this month.

Spends on non-essential & discretionary products like AC, car, and refrigerator has increased for 9% of families which reflects an increase by 2% points from last month. The net score which was at +2 last month has improved to +3 this month. This marks heightened consumer sentiment towards the festivities.

Health and fitness continue to remain important for consumers amidst the festive season wherein expenses towards health-related items have increased for 37% of the families. The health score which has a negative connotation i.e., the lesser the spends on health items the better the sentiments, has a net score value of -22, net score increase by +1, as compared to last month.

Consumption of media remains the same as the last two month at 19%. The overall, net score, which was at -1 last month, is at -3 this same.

Mobility has increased for 6% of the families, which reflects a decrease by 1% point from last month. The overall mobility net indicator score which was at 0%, last month, has reported -3 this month.

On topics of current national interest:

According to Axis My India Consumer Sentiment Index Survey, 21% of consumers plan to spend more this festive season as compared to last year. This sentiment has improved by 1% point from last month.

81% said that shopping for family will contribute as a ‘major’ expense this festive season. 7% aid that their major expenses will be parked towards investments.

In an attempt to understand the key areas where consumers are expected to spend this Diwali/Dusshera, the survey discovered that 44% plans to spend on apparels, while 8% each plan to spend on Mobile phones and white goods (such as AC, Washing Machine, Refrigerators).

In terms of big-ticket items, purse strings are still tight as only 6% of consumers plan to spend on jewellery, 5% plans to spend on 2-wheeler, 3% plans to spend on four-wheeler and 1% to spend on tractor/commercial vehicle. Also, only 2% plan to spend on home/plot/or a commercial property.

The survey further revealed that a majority of 78% plans to shop from local physical retail stores near their home and 14% plans to shop from E-commerce sites like Amazon/Flipkart this festive season.

As compared to pre-Covid times, 43% are buying smaller packs/sizes of their monthly groceries

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