Pound fall, interest rate rise, house for sale signs

What a week!

I am sure I am not alone in watching the news with astonishment over the last 7 days, as the fall out from what now appears to be a badly misjudged fiscal statement from the government has played out in financial markets here and around the world.

 For most of us the movements of international bond markets are somewhat arcane – but the implications of a weak pound and rapidly increasing interest rates are all too tangible.

Suddenly the bold and positive government action to limit the damage of the energy price increases has been swamped by the impact on interest rates and the dramatic withdrawal of hundreds of mortgage products to be replaced by significantly more expensive, and most likely unaffordable ones, whilst prices for consumer goods continue to head upwards.

Against this background brand owners have a narrow path to navigate. The sudden realisation that the cost of living crisis has come even closer, impacts consumer spending, stalls house buying activity, and creates even more anxiety for stretched households.

I have said it before and I will say it again – as market researchers these are the times when we earn our money. Brand owners have tough decisions to make, stick or twist on investment, lean in to consumer sentiment, or distract with visions of happier times.

Never has the need to understand the relationship between how people feel, what they know and how they behave been more important to unpick.

There are more questions than answers right now.

Please do let us know if we can help..