Recession dampening “pester power”?

Posted by Daniel Palmer on 14th July 2009

New research from UK supermarket Asda has revealed the extent to which the recession is having an impact on children’s behaviour in the supermarket.

The comprehensive study follows interviews with more than 1000 parents and 600 children. It highlights how parents are greatly underestimating the effect that the credit crunch is having on their children, not just in their attitude to finances, but also how worried they are about their parents’ wellbeing.

While only 18% of parents thought their children were concerned about the credit crunch, in reality the figure is much higher – more than half (55%) of kids said they were worried about the impact the recession was having on their mum and dad.

The research uncovered that the credit crunch generation have developed a more frugal outlook on life, potentially signalling the demise of pester power. Forty-four per cent of kids admitted they are not asking their parents for things that ‘they don’t really need’ compared to before the recession. Parents are also pushing back more, with 56 per cent simply saying ‘no’ more often to their kids.

“There is no doubt that the downturn is having a dramatic impact on kids and their behaviour with pester power on the wane for the first time since the War,” Paul Kelly, External Affairs Director for ASDA, suggested. “Our research provides a valuable insight into how the next generation’s attitudes towards money are changing, and how this will impact their purchasing decisions in the future. Frugality is now a reality across all age groups and social backgrounds.”

“This shift is significant and is set to continue after the recession has been and gone.”