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    Consumers Regain Some Optimism But Remain Frugal: Report

    Consumer confidence and economic optimism are on the upswing in the first half of 2010, according to “The Post-Recession Consumer in the U.S.,” a new report by New York-based market research publisher Packaged Facts.

    Consumer confidence and economic optimism are on the upswing in the first half of 2010, according to “The Post-Recession Consumer in the U.S.,” a new report by New York-based market research publisher Packaged Facts.

    “We anticipate that consumers traumatized by the severity of the economic downturn will continue to watch their wallets in the short term,” said Don Montuori, publisher of Packaged Facts. “In response, retailers and marketers are coming to grips with the need to reposition their brands. After surviving a period when they and their customers defined value purely in terms of price, marketers are searching for strategies that transcend the idea that the main benefit of buying their brands is to save money.”

    The report, based largely on Experian Simmons National Consumer Study (NCS) data, reveals that as recently as the first half of 2009, the number of fiscally pessimistic consumers increased significantly. By the time economic optimism rebounded in the second half of 2009, the number of confident consumers increased 25 percent over the first half to 48 million Americans, from 38 million.

    Packaged Facts identifies confident consumers as essential to the post-recession rebound, due to their above-average household incomes and the numerous other characteristics that make them amenable to marketing appeals. Confident consumers are eager to shop in new stores, try out new products and experiment with new foods. Confident consumers are also early adopters and influencers who shop frequently and enjoy doing so.

    “The Post-Recession Consumer in the U.S.” sifts through five years of Experian Simmons NCS data to follow the twists and turns in consumer confidence before, during and in the immediate aftermath of the most severe economic downturn in 70 years. The report contrasts the attitudes and behavior of consumers on the highest end of the Consumer Confidence Index of the Experian Simmons NCS (“Confident Consumers”) with those on the lowest end (“Anxious Consumers”). By doing so, it sheds light on the conflicted mindset of consumers as the recession loses its grip and suggests how marketers might respond to their customers in an uncertain post-recession economic environment. For more information, visit www.packagedfacts.com.

    SOURCE: The Gourmet Retailer

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