Consumer financial concern is stable in September.

While consumer financial concerns have not grown in September, personal finances are becoming a primary concern for more Canadian consumers. Over 2 in 5 Consumers find personal finances as their top concern, followed by family & friends and work-related concerns. The majority of Canadians feel the country is in an economic recession and expect inflation to worsen, though these numbers have slightly improved compared to August.

COVID-19 concerns have become a non-priority for many Canadians. Only 8% of Canadians view COVID as their primary concern dropping from 12% in July. Most believe we’ll learn to live with COVID, rather than returning to a pre-COVID normal and a loosening on mask mandates and travel restrictions.

Prices of gas & essentials are fueling economic concerns.

Concern regarding the economy is staying stable with nearly 23% of Canadian consumers rating their concern 10/10. The primary concerns among all groups continue to be rising prices on essentials & gas along with goods & services, an economic recession and impacts on retirement & pension plans. Concerns with gas prices continue to improve– down 3 percentage points versus August.

Consumers are still uncomfortable with discretionary spending.

Nearly three in four consumers say they’re currently uncomfortable splurging on premium items or taking money out of personal savings / retirement accounts to spend. Over half are also uncomfortable investing in the stock market, spending on non-essential travel, or spending on non-essential items in general. Approximately half of all shoppers anticipate cutting back on eating out & travel to offset rising prices which is similar to August sentiment.

Pandemic concern has dropped in the latest month.

Concern with COVID-19 has nosedived with only 27% feeling highly concerned (compared to 37% in August). While still a top concern for Canadians, concern around hospitals running out of space or staffing has dropped by 8 percentage points versus August. Other COVID-related concerns have also seen drops in September.

About the Survey

Beginning in February of 2021, Numerator’s Canadian Consumer Sentiment survey has been fielded to roughly 1,000 consumers on a monthly basis. All consumers are active members of Numerator’s Canadian OmniPanel.

COVID-19 Impact on Consumer Behaviour

For past insights into Canadian consumer behaviour and sentiment as it relates to the COVID-19 pandemic, check out our survey insights from March 2020 through May 2022.

See the insights.

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