Dollar stores, shoppers feeling the effects of inflation

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KBSI) – Cape Girardeau resident Richard Morris has found himself shopping at dollar stores more frequently in recent months. 

“I’d have to say [I’ve been going to these stores more] in the last six months,” Morris said. “I think we’re seeing this trend right now of upward inflationary times, and the Feds doing different things with interest rates trying to level this off. We’re a patient society most of the time. We have to be patient.” 

High inflation rates have driven more consumers like Morris to these dollar stores. 

Recent findings from Numerator Price Pulse indicate that the average price of grocery items purchased at dollar stores is up 24 percent from this time last year. 

Southeast Missouri State professor David Yaskewich said dollar stores, or any retail outlet for that matter, have to find ways to combat rising inflation, even if that means passing some cost along to consumers. 

“Clearly, the national trend of higher inflation in the past year, as well as the labor shortage and supply chain issues that are really causing inflation, that’s clearly a primary reason why we’re seeing any retail outlet have higher prices, particularly dollar stores,” he said.

Thomas Norfleet, a father of seven and grandfather of three, said he and his wife keep a budget to manage their expenses. 

“We have a budgeting system that my wife plans out,” he said. “We write stuff down on a paper. She does all the little layout and everything for it. So when we go into the stores, we know what we’re going to get there and we’re right on out.” 

Based on a number of factors, Yaskewich expects the rate of price increases to slow in the months to come. 

“It is expected that over the course of the next year, and it’s the hope, that those year-to-year changes in prices would likely go down as the federal reserve continues to increase interest rates, increase borrowing costs, that’s likely to slow the economy, particularly consumer spending,” he said.

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