Soaring inflation and you

ended 12. April 2022

Tomorrow morning at 07:00 the Office for National Statistics (the Govt basically) is publishing the latest inflation data. It's expected to rise further, according to economists, potentially as high as 6.7% (from the current 6.2%). We want to know:

  • How is inflation impacting you personally (and your household)?
  • How is inflation impacting your business or charity?
  • Are you putting up your prices to try and counter inflation?
  • With the cost of almost everything rising, how confident are you feeling right now?

We'll issue your comments to the local and national media tomorrow morning when the data drops. PLEASE ensure there are hi-res jpegs of you in your Newspage media pack as if a journalist quotes you, they will often want an accompanying pic.

16 responses from the Newspage community

Star Quote
"With inflation at 7%, households, families and small high street businesses are being hit for six. This obscene level of inflation is a double whammy for the family businesses that line the UK's high streets. They're being hit in the tills and in their own pockets at the exact same time. For now, many are resisting raising prices but at some point something will have to give. Our message to consumers is, if you have less to spend, spend it wisely, not with the online giants but with the local businesses that are the bedrock of your communities. Right now, they are depending on your custom more than ever."
Star Quote
"For the past two years, I've been hanging onto my business by my fingernails. Covid had a major impact on my business with all the galleries closed and exhibitions and shows cancelled, along with lessons and workshops to the general public. In addition to a lower income, the cost of supplies has risen significantly. The availability of supplies is also incredibly erratic and now, like other small business owners, I'm having to address the cost of living crisis, which is already causing record-low sales. I've been forced to diversify my product range, to allow for more accessible prices. Very recently, I felt I had no alternative other than to take out a personal loan so I know I can cover personal and business rent payments for the next six months. I have long-standing health issues and the stress and anxiety from all the financial pressure have wrecked havoc with my symptoms resulting in regular flare-ups. I genuinely fear for the future. This will be my last year in my own business unless things turn a corner soon."
Star Quote
"Inflation is really hitting my business hard. The price of gold and silver have skyrocketed and I will have to increase my prices to keep in line with increasing supplier costs. Although I have my own website with fees that haven't increased yet, one of the global companies that I sell through has increased its fees. The competition in this sector is fierce and a lot of people are selling as a hobby rather than a business so it's hard to compete. Jewellery is not a need, it's a want, and as inflation increases, people will look to buy mass-produced items rather than something that is handmade and unique to them. But mass-produced items hit the masses hardest."
Star Quote
"The prices of ingredients have started to rise and will continue to do so. This is incredibly difficult since, as a new business, I will eventually have to pass on costs to the consumer. I will have to up my prices and try and spread them across all my products. My new range is cold-processed, which at least means I won't need to use as much electricity to produce my cosmetics. I'm worried as people, including myself, are understandably trying to spend less and save money and my products may now be seen more as luxury items than necessary purchases."
Star Quote
"Soaring inflation means that we are only just able to cover all our household bills and keep our heads above water. This also means any unexpected expense like an emergency dental appointment or car breakdown would most likely have to be paid by credit card. I am a self-employed jeweller and many of the materials I need to make my products, along with packaging, postage and promotional costs, have shot up in price. This means a choice between raising my prices and possibly pricing myself out of the market or swallowing the costs and making less profit. If the cost of living keeps rising and wages don't keep up, I don't know how much longer I will be able to operate as a small business."
Star Quote
"In our adult lives, my wife and I have never really been out of debt, and when we set up our social enterprise coffee trike, we were still in debt. Inflation hitting 7% is catastrophic but we are determined to stay positive. We aren't in this business to make money so as long as we can get by, then that's enough. Personally, we will cut back on everything to ensure a simple life and professionally we hope our regulars will still find money for an affordable luxury, namely a good brew. We will do everything we can not to put our prices up, however if we do, we will lower them again as soon as humanly possible."
"How much more can small businesses, and the general public, take? Barely out of the pan of Covid and its restrictions and we are into the fire of rising costs. While the flames flicker around us, we are trying desperately to cut our cloth accordingly, but our own prices, like those of many other small businesses, will probably eventually have to go up. So many businesses will struggle just to survive, let alone build or thrive. Those who do well should share the love by paying promptly and supporting local and small. We really do need everyone to pull together, even more than we have already."
"I'm lucky that my business is B2B rather than B2C but, as the latest statistics show, many companies have been put off exporting or have given up importing altogether. This is down to the additional red tape from Brexit, hugely increased shipping costs and disruption to the supply chain due to the pandemic. Also, most of my customers are manufacturers so they're dealing with soaring raw material and energy prices. I don't see any of these inflationary pressures ending soon so I'm watching every penny, which is bad news for B2C businesses as many people are doing the same. Even if they do have disposable income right now does anyone feel confident enough to spend it? The last two years has taught us we've got no idea what's round the corner."
"It is increasingly clear that the current high rate of inflation is not a short-term blip but more of a medium-term correction. While, like many businesses, we are absorbing cost increases as much as possible, the fact that so many areas of our daily lives are now seeing increases, from energy and food prices to fuel and taxation, means that inevitably we will need to pass on some of these increases to our customers. I remain optimistic about our business opportunities this year, but the increased costs will undoubtedly squeeze our margins, and there is already noticeable hesitance in clients committing to future projects. We have a perfect storm of increased inflation, Covid cases still running at high numbers, and the tragic war in Ukraine."
"We are carefully reviewing every single aspect of our spending both as a household and a business. Every decision counts. We've seen a huge shift in businesses allocating budgets to other departments and leaving very little for marketing, therefore reducing the need for translation services. One of the things we are doing to fight that is to increase some of our language services that have more demand to keep up with the costs without going too much over the market rate and still be able to pay our translators fairly. I'm not feeling confident at all, in all honesty I didn't expect things to deteriorate as quickly as they are. Unless something drastic happens, a lot of businesses and households will suffer in the months to come both economically and mentally."
“It's an extremely worrying time for every family right now with inflation where it is. With the cost of everything increasing, I can't see how I can grow as a business at the moment, and am even concerned I might struggle to maintain an income. The impact this could have on my household would be devastating. As a self-employed person, I worry about the impact inflation will have on my business. Being completely reliant on selling art, I am already feeling the effects of people having less money to spend, or even just not wanting to buy things like art when they are worried about having enough food in their cupboards or their heating on. There have been so many heart-breaking horror stories in the media lately about people who have to make choices about whether to eat or heat, or have to go hungry themselves as they are feeding their children first. It almost makes me feel guilty advertising my work for sale as I know so many people just won't be able to afford it."
Having to run two households as my husband works at the other side of the country ( as a result of Covid impact) the double whammy has severely affected our daily lives From limiting his ability to return home as regularly, both households not using heating to begin with… Inflation, has squeezed the small Business I run from both sides. materials have surged in price and increases on delivery pricing. I don’t feel confident to pass these increases onto my hard won customers knowing that their households are most likely to be suffering financial stress from national increases. Of costs continue to rise I can see my business being unable to continue if things continue at this rate.
"Not only have I seen a massive jump in raw material costs, but energy costs have skyrocketed, along with the costs for things as fundamental as postage. To increase my prices to match would make my work completely out of the range of all but the wealthiest of people. I barely encounter anyone with disposable income right now. Like many small business owners, I am not comfortable in passing on these costs, because I know how many of my customers are struggling. The pay rise for my day job has been less than 1% for the past two years, and so with the expected return to work, and cost of fuel for my car, it may well be that I have to shelve my business for the foreseeable future. I simply won't have the money to buy in the raw materials I need, let alone be able to sell them."
"Wow, the walls really are closing in. I don't want to up my prices because of the cost of living squeeze, but how can we small businesses not? We are being hit from every angle, in stereo. Meanwhile, the 'big boy' corporations continue to thrive as they can lower their prices and take the hit. The whole economy feels fundamentally broken."
"Everything is increasing in price, from our rent, storage unit, energy costs, telephone, broadband, mailing and shipping costs, food and last, but by no means least, art materials and printing services. We have been engaged in the arts professionally for almost 40 years and, during that time, have seen inflation increase and have weathered several recessions and downturns in the economy. As artists, we can always tell when the economy is going to take a nose-dive because sales quickly slow down. After all, who is going to prioritise spending money on art when they need food on the table or extra money to heat their homes? "However, in the past, we have known that once a recession passes, sales return. This time around, though, following Covid and now with a war in Europe, it may be a long while before things stabilise. We continue to make sales for now as we have collectors all over the world, but who knows what the near future holds? We have increased mailing costs as they are outside of our control but rather then increase prices of art we have widened our price ranges. We may have original oil paintings at £5,500+ or archival Prints in the £100's but we have also created products from my paintings, such as jigsaw puzzles (very popular during lockdowns!) and fine art greetings cards from just £3.50. This way we appeal to a broader audience, which is key in the current climate."
"The rapid rise in inflation is due to multiple factors, and the Russia-Ukraine war is now a major contributor. Until there is a ceasefire, inflation will continue to rise as it’s turning more into a Russia-NATO Cold War 2 at the moment. No one’s prepared for sharp rise in inflation, not households, not businesses, not even the government. With inflation at its highest level for decades and a potential recession on the horizon, I, as a small business owner, am very reluctant to increase my prices. I have actually done the reverse and dropped our prices, offered discounts and sales in an attempt to boost sales whilst remaining mindful of people’s priorities right now. Of course this has eaten up our already slim margins, but when the going gets tough, the tough get going."