From BIGresearch Consumer's Intentions and Actions Survey, June 2007.
- Women are least confident in the economy over the next 6 months followed by consumers with incomes below $50,000. Men are most confident.
- Shopping trips are being impacted by higher gas prices as 41.9% of consumers say they are taking fewer trips and 40.1% are shopping closer to home.
- Overall 72.9% of the people think gas prices will be higher by July 4th. 77.8% of consumers who have a student loan think gas prices will increase over this time frame and the average price will be $3.39 a gallon.
- 39.9% of the respondents believe the stock market accurately reflects the strength of the economy and 60.9% said it doesn't.
- 32.3% of all women respondents plan on decreasing spending over the next 3 months and 32.9% of consumers with incomes over $50,000 said same.
- Future purchase intentions for durables such as computers, furniture, appliances, home improvements, TV's, digital cameras, and housing all are up from the previous month (May) indicating consumers may have some pent up spending to do in the 3rd and 4th quarter of the year.
Is it surprising that women are the first to react to higher gas prices, rising energy costs and an overall group think of waiting for the other shoe to drop? Women earn less, usually handle finances in the family and are more aware of the costs of everyday items. When gasoline can fluctuate eleven cents in one week (last week in Texas), who would not be worried?
Things you can do to help your gasoline budget:
- Go shopping and run chores on one day of the week, planning your route in advance.
- Buy local. Support your farmers' market. You will be eating fresher and helping decrease the amount of energy it takes to grow and transport your food.
- Carpool. Bring a book to the game practice and stay there while your child practices. Or take a walk to the library.
- Use public transportation if you have it. Ride a bike. Use a scooter instead of a car.
- Visit GasBuddy.com or GasPriceWatch.com to find the cheapest gas in your area. If you can save five cents on a gallon of gas and you have a 25-gallon tank, you have saved $1.25. If you save this amount weekly, you will save $65 a year. If you drive a gas-guzzler, you just paid for a getaway weekend!
- Use Discover (and other) cards that give you rebates on your purchases to purchase gasoline.
- Sam's Clubs that have gasoline pumps will give you an three-cent per gallon discount if you pay with your Wal-Mart Card.
- Check your credit card statements. You have have a card that will give you a discount at certain gas stations.
- Get off the highway to buy gas. I saved sixteen cents a gallon last week by waiting and buying gas in a small town.
- Drive smart. Acceleration eats gasoline. Do not use your air-conditioner unless you must. Take all excess weight out of your car. Keep your car in tune and have the oil change religiously.