Observe, enlighten and decipher the evolution
of consumption patterns in France and abroad
Section - Crisis awareness


2 minutes of reading
While the 2022 Cetelem Consumer Barometer reported scores never before attained both in terms of the general situation in each country and people’s personal circumstances, it also hinted that certain adverse currents were at play, not least a slight uptick in inflation that was beginning to cause concern. However, it would have been premature at that stage to talk about a crisis, if not about symptoms of unknown severity.Today, the sudden return of high inflation – to a degree not seen in nearly 40 years – largely driven by the war in Ukraine, means that Europeans must learn to live with double-digit price rises.

Energy prices were soaring long before 24 February 2022, the day the war in Ukraine began. The disruption of gas and electricity supplies has brought the word “shortage” back into the economic conversation, having long been discarded from the latter. The consequences of climate change, including severe droughts and floods, have put a strain on the production of basic foodstuffs. Global growth fell from 6% in 2021 to 3.2% in 2022 and is expected to drop to 2.7% in 2023. This is the bleakest growth trend recorded since the global financial crisis of 2008-2009 and the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic. The eurozone is close to recession, with a mere 0.3 percentage points of growth expected in 2023, compared to 3.1% in 2022 and 5.2% in 2021.

The UK and possibly Germany are expected to be at the forefront of this coming recession, with both set to post negative growth figures. In a context coloured by multiple crises, it is no surprise to see the Cetelem Barometer reflect the ambient gloom. The results of this survey only confirm this (Fig. 1). 

Infographic N°1

Barometer Observatoire Cetelem 2023
Sub-section 1
A general demoralisation
Last year, the mood among Europeans was almost euphoric. In fact, they had never viewed their national situations and personal circumstances in such a positive light. The score they assigned to the fo