Previous subscribers to Consumer Atlas have told us that the key benefit is its high level view of the financial landscape and how it is shifting over time
. In short, we help you tell the wood from the trees.
The last Atlas study was in early 2008, when Northern Rock’s rescue was still news and recessionary pressures were starting to bite. The hot topics on consumers’ minds at the time included:
- Mortgage holders’ fear of coming off rate (interest rates were still at 5%)
- Rising petrol prices – fuel had risen to around £1.08 per litre (which seemed expensive!)
- Labour were in power and still spending – but were clearly on their way out
Consumers, in a state of shock following the financial meltdown, were just getting used to the idea that the good times had (at least temporarily) come to an end. For the younger life-stages, this was their first adult experience of belt tightening and they felt very unsure of the implications. However, there was not then any real sense that this was anything beyond a cyclical recession.
Fast forwarding to 2012, there seems a lack of suitable terminology to describe the situation we now find ourselves in. The word ‘crisis’ (and indeed ‘crunch’) implies something that happens suddenly and unexpectedly and then comes to an end. Even in a war situation, after a period of time what is completely abnormal (bombs, rationing etc.) becomes accepted as the norm – one adjusts.
This is therefore the perfect time to launch the next Consumer Atlas.
In 2012, we ask: to what extent have people adapted to an environment of on-going tightening and austerity?