Although three-quarters of the Czech population believe that they will manage the coming crisis, a third of households have nothing to build a reserve from now. This was shown by a large survey conducted in August for the financial group Partners by the MindBridge Consulting agency on a thousand adult citizens of the Czech Republic.
It is probably not surprising that 86 percent of people perceive the economic situation in the Czech Republic as worse than a year ago, and this feeling is even stronger among people with an average income and older people. People consider the rise in energy prices to be the strongest cause of the worsening economic situation.
The survey focused mainly on households, but that the increase in energy prices can have a much wider impact, warns economist Martin Mašát from the Partners financial group. “Not only are the costs of residents increasing, which will negatively affect their purchasing power, but companies are similarly affected. And we have to reckon with the risk of a complete stoppage of gas supplies to the Czech Republic, and therefore the possibility of an energy lockdown,” he warns.
Nevertheless, the majority of people (78 percent) believe that, albeit with difficulties and limitations, they will manage the situation in the end. They confirmed to the explorers how they were ready to save. Almost three quarters (75%) expect that they will have to heat less in winter; 58 percent expect that next year they will not be able to afford the vacation they are used to.
Similar surveys have been prepared by Partners for several years, so we can compare how people thought about saving last year, how they think today – and above all, what they are already saving on. First of all, they are looking for energy savings, but they also stop going to restaurants and the cinema and spend less on clothes.
Where we thought we could save and where we really save:
It is worrying how the number of people who can save enough, even those who can save at least something, continues to decrease. There are more and more households that from time to time do not come out at the end of the month. Together with those who practically never come out, it is almost a tenth (nine percent) of households. More than a third (34%) of households have nothing to create a reserve.
What has not changed since last year, unfortunately, is the number of people who have a reasonable reserve for worse times. Sixteen percent of those surveyed have practically none, their savings will not last even a month. Another quarter or so will last a month or two.
Over three-quarters of people (79 percent) would like some form of government assistance, i.e. subsidies for energy or at least partial compensation for their price increases. However, only 29 percent of them believe that the government will manage to mitigate the effects of the crisis.
Gabriela Vondrušová, executive director of the Institute for the Prevention and Solution of Over-indebtedness, highlights the importance of the housing allowance. Today, it receives far fewer households than could be entitled to it. At the same time, he says that it would be appropriate to further expand the circle of potential recipients. And reduce the barrier to access it.
“Government aid should be aimed primarily at the most vulnerable groups of the population, simplify access to obtaining housing allowances and at the same time strengthen the capacities of employment offices, or expand the places where people can apply for allowances, or increase housing standards again to reflect current energy prices, ” recommends Vondrušová. The Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, Marián Jurečka, has already spoken about increasing the standards since October.
He studied Czech language and literature. He worked in a literary magazine and in the press department of the Czech Post, later as a freelance proofreader and editor. He edited articles for Peníze.cz, Finmag.cz and the paper Finmag. He writes… More articles by the author.
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