Press Centre

Two in three mums fear the economy will get worse in 2013

News comes as Asda publishes its latest Mumdex report report

  • THE MUMDEX – Mums’ pessimism about their family finances and quality of life has driven down the Mumdex optimism score from -8% to -18% over the last year.
  • SHOW ME THE MONEY – Only one in 10 said the news about the UK coming out of recession made them feel more positive about the UK economy. Two thirds predict it will get worse still in 2013.
  • A SHOT OF OPTIMISM – Mums feel that the Olympics and Jubilee have injected the national mood with a shot of optimism. Six out of 10 mums said the events made them proud to be British and nearly six in 10 anticipate these events will have positive impact on the UK over the next five years.
  • CHRISTMAS WITHOUT THE TRIMMINGS – A tough year means that 45% of mums will be spending less on Christmas this year. 46% will spend less on Christmas decorations, 39% will spend less on their spouse and one in 10 won’t send Christmas cards
  • FAMILIES REMAIN RESILIENT – Despite the tough economic conditions eight out of 10 mums feel their family’s happiness is on a par or better than their family’s happiness when they were growing up

Today (Tuesday 27th November 2012) Asda launches its fourth Mumdex report which focuses on family life, predictions for 2013 and mums’ plans for the festive season. The Asda Mumdex – a panel of over 5,500 Asda Mums of varying ages and backgrounds – has shown the Mumdex optimism score falling from -8% to -18%, driven down by mums’ concerns about what is happening to their family finances and their family’s quality of life.

The outlook for 2013 doesn’t look much better with only one in 10 saying the news that the UK is out of recession has made them feel more positive about the economy. Two thirds of our mums predict the UK economy will get worse next year.

One Asda Mum said: “It [the news the UK is emerging from the recession] does not make me feel any better, as for some reason the price of things still keep rising! There is no decrease yet. So only when I see things rapidly declining in price, will I believe it and benefit from it.” (Mum, Asda Mumdex)

This is not a uniform story across the UK however. Mums from Scotland, Wales and the Midlands feel most negative about the prospects for the UK economy, with seven out of 10 mums ?there anticipating the UK economy will get worse in 2013. Those in the south and north of England take a slightly more optimistic outlook, with six out of 10 predicting it will get worse.

THE NATIONAL MOOD

Despite a difficult financial year, mums feel that the Olympics and Jubilee have injected the national mood with a shot of optimism. Six out of ten mums said the events of 2012 made them feel proud to be British and half felt it made them feel a shared sense of national identity. Only a fifth of mums agree that these events have made them feel positive about 2012, but nearly six in 10 anticipate these events will have positive impact on the UK over the next five years.

CHRISTMAS

Given the gloomy outlook, it is no surprise that mums will be budgeting carefully around Christmas, with 45% saying they will be spending less this year. Despite these financial concerns, mums are determined to make this Christmas the most magical ever, re-balancing their budgets to protect the things that will make the day extra special. Two thirds of mums will be spending the same or more food and presents for their children this year compared with last year.

FAMILY HAPPINESS

Despite financial pressures eight out of 10 mums feel their family’s happiness is on a par or better than ?their family’s happiness when they were growing up. The research also highlights that those families who spent most time together were three times more likely to report higher family happiness than those who spent least time together.

Family life is not entirely rosy however as half of mums say working hours are a barrier to their family spending time together. Over a quarter say the TV, the internet and computer games are distractions.

Judith McKenna, chief operating officer at Asda, said:

“Consumer confidence is key to getting the economy moving again. With over 90% of mums expecting the economy to be the same or worse next year we have a long way to go.

“As we approach Christmas, our Mumdex research shows that mums won’t let their financial concerns impact their families. In fact in a year of British celebrations the role of the family has become more important than ever.”

Claire Walker, Director of Policy at Family Lives and working mum, said:

“We have heard that the outlook for the UK economy is starting to look brighter, but we know that families are still finding it tough on the ground, and they will continue to do so next year. Christmas can be the toughest time of all for some families and as Asda’s Mumdex shows, budgets are going to be tight for families this year. At a time when emotions run high and stresses and strains increase, the fall-out from the pressures of the festive period can often culminate in families forgetting what Christmas is all about. And that’s family. It’s about spending time together, clad in festive jumpers, sitting round the table for a meal and then watching some Christmas TV.

“If Mums are feeling stressed, then Christmas will be memorable for all the wrong reasons! Try not to leave everything until the last minute and don’t be afraid to ask supportive family members for help. Make allowances for spontaneity, and try not to have unrealistic expectations. Above all, remember that Christmas is a time for people to come together and have fun!”

You can find the full Mumdex report here.

Posted in Press Centre on 27 November 2012