Americans are increasingly buying food at one-price stores as inflation pushed food prices up 12.2%.
From October 2021 to June 2022, food sales in discount stores increased by 71%, while sales of the same items in regular stores decreased by 5% over the same time period.
According to a report prepared by LendingClub, 61% of Americans say they are now living paycheck to paycheck, and big chain stores like Walmart warn that prices won’t go down anytime soon.
Although some one-stop shops carry fresh produce, most of them sell exclusively canned and processed foods high in salt and sugar, which threatens Americans with health problems in addition to financial hardship.
These trends in the food trade are one manifestation of the problems that have plagued the US economy over the past few months. Last Thursday, data were published, according to which the volume of economic turnover has been declining for the second quarter in a row.
Experts cite a variety of reasons for what is happening, from President Biden’s penchant for reckless spending of public funds and problems in supply chains, to the conflict in Ukraine and anti-Russian sanctions that are negatively affecting global food and energy markets.
San Antonio resident Lily Penelope told the Wall Street Journal how they started buying groceries at a local one-stop shop, choosing canned chicken, peanut butter and vegetables most often.
Penelope, 26, is unable to drive due to her disability and is now unable to buy her own food at her local grocery store or pay for Uber rides. According to her, before the total cost of such a trip was about $ 120, but since January it has almost doubled.
“My health and quality of life has deteriorated markedly,” said Penelope. “I am in a position where I have to choose between buying food that I can afford and health.”
Dollar General’s one-stop shop, which is closest to Penelope’s home, doesn’t sell fresh produce, a problem many Americans across the country face.
Of more than 18,000 Dollar General stores in the United States, only 2,300 sell fresh produce. Representatives of the network claim that they are working on a solution to this problem, but it will not be possible to do this earlier than in a few years.
“Although Dollar General is not a full-fledged grocery store, today we consider ourselves a department store because our outlets are within walking distance and we maintain low prices for essentials, including groceries,” a spokeswoman for the chain said. She added that in the coming years, the company plans to start selling fresh products in 10,000 outlets.
Until then, shoppers will have to make do with canned food, boxed convenience foods, and, if you’re lucky, frozen food. Although such nutrition is not healthy, buyers are willing to put up with it for the sake of savings.
“Everything they sell is very sweet,” said Phoenix Kamlo, 41. “But the store is close to home and it’s cheap.”
The Dollar Tree chain of cheap stores followed the example of Dollar General. They have never positioned themselves as a grocery store before, but now they are ready to bring more fresh products to the shelves.
According to a spokesperson for the chain, 16,162 stores sell frozen food, as well as sugar-free products, whole grains, milk and eggs.
Meanwhile, big chains such as Walmart have already warned their customers not to hope for food price cuts in the near future. But now there are very good discounts on groups of goods such as clothing, as they have ceased to sell well due to the desire of buyers to save money.
“Rising food and fuel prices are impacting how customers spend money, and while we’ve made good progress on household sales, clothing at Walmart has to be discounted more heavily,” said Walmart CEO Doug McMillon. ).
Last Monday, Walmart stock prices fell nearly 9%. The company intends to announce a decrease in earnings in the income statement next week. Retailers like Target are reporting similar consumer trends.
“As the nation’s largest retailer, Walmart is the industry leader,” Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail, said in the report. “.
Walmart-owned Sam’s Club reported a 10.5% year-over-year revenue increase in May, while discount supermarket Aldi saw a “significant increase” in shoppers: in May alone, according to Insider, this The store gained about 2.5 million new customers.
According to a new poll by YouGov, 24% of Americans say inflation is the top problem facing the United States right now. Rising prices are far ahead of other problems, including unemployment and the state of the economy as a whole.
The rising cost of living is forcing 29% of Americans to look for jobs ranging from selling clothes online to taking paid surveys, according to Insuranks.
Experts attribute this level of inflation to a variety of reasons, from problems in supply chains to the conflict in Ukraine, which has a negative impact on global food and energy markets. However, the rise in prices has clearly dealt a devastating blow to Biden’s approval rating, which now sits at just 37%.
It also hurt retailers. Not only Walmart and Target are cutting their earnings forecasts, but also McDonald’s and Chipotle Mexican Grill, which reported lower sales.
Online retailer Amazon lost $2 billion in the second quarter, but it still expects earnings to rise in the third quarter.
The Federal Reserve said on Wednesday that it would raise interest rates by 0.75%, ie the key interest rate will be 2.33%. Thus, the central bank tries to control the rising inflation.
Rising rates will result in higher interest rates on mortgages, credit cards and all types of loans, which will increase monthly bill payments and undermine the ability of Americans to repay debts.
Although interest rates on savings accounts will also rise to 2%, this will not help make life easier for consumers in a rising cost of living.
The Commerce Department on Thursday said the United States economy has contracted for the second quarter in a row, matching the classic definition of a recession. GDP shrank by 0.9% in the second quarter, while it declined by 1.6% in the first quarter.
Another indicator of inflation, namely the price index for personal consumption expenditures, rose by 6.8% by June over the past 12 months. This is the largest increase since January 1982.
The White House dismisses claims that a six-month economic contraction is a recession, insisting that the US economy remains strong.
Biden said in a statement, “It’s no surprise that the economy is slowing as the Federal Reserve takes action to bring inflation down.”
“But despite the fact that we are now facing historic global challenges, we are on the right track and we will emerge from this transition period stronger and more secure,” he added.
Most economists and analysts define a recession as the contraction of GDP for two consecutive quarters. But the official private research group that tracks recessions in the United States is looking at other indicators as well, including labor market performance and spending.
There are more challenges ahead for the Americans, says John Leer, chief economist at Morning Consult. He noted that “inflation is likely to remain high at least until the end of the summer, given its current speed and scope.”
Americans have always lived paycheck to paycheck. Their whole system is broken and aimed at keeping the poor poor. Nothing will change for the foreseeable future.
This is the final stage before most Americans find themselves in economic conditions they never imagined they would be in. As a result, a lot of people will give up “luxuries” that don’t really have any value and start thinking pragmatically.
Yeah. I was going to buy a power tool, but in just a month, its price has increased by 50%. So no, I’ll manage without it somehow.
If you voted for Biden, you voted for this whole nightmare. It was easy to dislike Trump, but let’s now compare the state of the economy.
Apparently, the Communist Democrats’ plan to make all Americans paupers is working as intended.
At this rate, millions of Americans will starve to death from Democrat-instigated hyperinflation before they even have a chance to perish in a mass shooting. If you want to have food and formula for your kids, stop voting Democrat.
Everyone rejoiced loudly when the conflict with Russia began, only now no one wants to pay the bills.
As sad as it is, it’s true. Prices skyrocketed, but my salary stayed the same. I feel terribly unhappy.
All this is true. Every time I buy gas or groceries, I want to hit anyone who voted for this clown from the bottom of my heart.
Democrats continue to put Americans last. Illegal immigrants have now become more important than American workers and pensioners. Ukraine has become more important than American workers and pensioners. The “elite” (Democratic voters) have become more important than American workers and pensioners.
Biden and the Democrats don’t care. They keep spending at a record rate. And inflation is your problem.
A box of cereal at our convenience store costs seven dollars! I honestly don’t understand how families deal with this. I don’t eat meat and my husband only eats chicken, which helps us keep costs down. But now everything has become absurdly expensive. Our grocery store is visited by people who live an hour away from it. People are really in a difficult situation, and there is no end in sight.
They gave Ukraine 60 billion dollars! The Americans were in last place.