Beauty market losing out to other consumer categories

By Simon Pitman

The beauty market remains a safe bet, despite stronger evidence that the US economy has taken a downturn, although its position is slipping.

Although beauty remains firmly in the list of fail-safe categories during the difficult economic conditions that are currently prevailing, a NPD report suggests that it has dropped to fourth place in a list of the least vulnerable consumer goods categories.

Video games take the top slot, followed by toys in second place. However, compared to last month, beauty has been knocked out of the third spot to be replaced by movies.

According to the NPD consumer survey, only 32 percent of respondents said they would cut back on spend for video games, while 36 percent said they would cut back for toys, 39 percent would reduce spend on movies and 41 percent said they would reduce spend on beauty products.

Women remain loyal to beauty
“But beauty is still showing that women remain loyal to their regimen, even in tough times,” said Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst for the NPD Group.

Where consumers are most cutting back is on dining out, with 57 percent saying they are reducing spend, while this is followed by spending on apparel, as 52 percent of consumers say they will be reducing their spend

Overall consumers are getting less confident about the state of the economy, too, with 91 percent of respondents stating that they believe the country’s economy was either heading for, or in a recession, compared to a figure of 84 percent back in April.

Less people secure about their jobs
“Off-hand that 7 percent increase may not sound like a lot, but when you turn the spending faucet of 14 million people off, that 7 percent from April to November represents trillions of dollars,” said Marshall.

Likewise, the survey also points out that the number of people who feel insecure about their job is growing rapidly, with only 19 percent of respondents reporting that they feel their jobs are secure.

Cohen added that the figure relating to job security represent an all-time low, as well as being very important as it is a precursor to consumer behavior.


Friday, November 26, 2008

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