IRI survey: Second stimulus payment would be spent on groceries, essentials

As lawmakers debate a new round of pandemic stimulus payments, new research from IRI finds that 27% of U.S. consumers used their first stimulus payments for groceries and household essentials.

In fact, IRI found, those consumers would use a new round of stimulus payments in much the same way. The categories most likely to benefit from additional stimulus payments include meat and produce. As well, e-commerce and membership-driven food retail also stand to benefit if lawmakers approve another similar round of stimulus payments. 

The report also found that:

  • Shoppers anticipate fewer purchases of meat, fresh foods and snacks if unemployment benefits are reduced.
  • If unemployment benefits are reduced, shoppers report they will spend less at most channels; only the Dollar channel nets out with no change in spending.
  • Nearly 40% of respondents report feeling stressed; 49% of those unemployed are stressed.
  • 38% of consumers wish retailers could solve out-of-stock issues; more than a quarter want retailers to support local food banks.
  • Parents anticipate spending less on back-to-school purchases.

New stimulus money would not only go toward groceries and household essentials. Consumers would also put that money toward savings accounts and to pay rent and mortgages. Less popular targets of a new round of stimulus payments include home improvements, healthcare bills, furniture, appliances and electronics, clothing, and treating themselves or their families to something extra.

The report’s findings are based on surveys conducted between July 31 and Aug. 2.

This article originally appeared in Progressive Grocer.