Sberbank analyzes Russians’ consumption behavior patterns between March 7 and 13, 2020

Mar 20, 2020
  • Spending in Russia between Mar 7 and 13 up 8.4% w-o-w
  • Impulse buying reaches RUB80.1 bln over 7 days, SberData analysts say
  • Largest increase in spending seen in white and brown goods category, up almost ¼ compared to Jan-Feb


March 20, 2020, Moscow — SberData, Sberbank’s big data analytics and procession lab, is launching a series of indicators to track economic processes with the shortest time lag possible. The lab is set to publish a weekly analysis of consumer spending evolution regarding goods and services.

Between March 7 and 13, 2020 a sharp increase in spending was spotted. Over the seven days, purchases jumped 8.4% week-over-week. This performance is free from the holiday fluctuations, i.e. the traditional increase in spending on March 8. According to SberData, additional consumer spending reached RUB80.1 bln.

The most rapid growth in spending was not recorded in pharmacies or grocery stores. From March 7 to 13, it was the demand for household appliances and electronics that increased sharply, being a quarter higher than in January-February. Active purchases of household appliances is how consumers react to the depreciation of the ruble, a pattern that was recorded earlier.

Also, people are spending more in drugstores. Over the period, their spending in pharmacies soared 7.6% compared to early 2020, which might seem insignificant, but this added some RUB2 bln to people’s expenses.

Russians increase their spending on home appliances and medical goods by cutting their travel expenses, partially. Sales of practically all travel-related goods and services decreased dramatically. Plane ticket expenses sank a third compared to early 2020 and were followed by lower hotel expenses, proportionately. As for the notorious buckwheat and toilet paper, no dramatic changes in consumer behavior patterns were seen in groceries or supermarkets. This might change over the next reporting week.