Expectations of purchasing power near Tet

The Lunar New Year is approaching. At the moment, in traditional markets, flea markets, and supermarkets, purchasing power is gradually increasing. Small traders expect a 50% increase in purchasing power compared to regular days, focusing on essential items for the holiday. However, the price increase of goods will not be significant because there is a plentiful supply of goods, and the prices of some essential consumer goods are relatively stable. People can rest assured when shopping for the Lunar New Year.


People shopping for Tet at BigC supermarket (Hanoi). Photo: Quang Vinh.

At this time, in some traditional markets such as Gia Lam market, Ngoc Thuy market in Long Bien district or Long Bien wholesale market (Hanoi), essential goods for Tet such as dried bamboo shoots, vermicelli, mushrooms, pork rind, processed food, and special items are abundant.

Increasing purchasing power

Street vendor Nguyen Thi Hoa An selling groceries at Gia Lam market (Long Bien district) shared that at this time, customers have been buying pastries, candy, or stocking up on dried bamboo shoots and vermicelli for Tet. In the past few days, customers have been buying intensively, and some customers have asked to buy banh da nem but it is out of stock. “This year, the prices are still stable. The amount of goods sold has started to increase significantly in the last 3 days. I have been selling without a break for over a week to serve customers” – Ms. An said.

Along with that, at Gia Lam market, street vendor Nguyen Thu Thuy selling dried goods said that agricultural products for Tet are quite abundant. Even traditional items that every household needs for Tet such as bamboo shoots, nem, and fragrant mushrooms have been bought a lot by consumers. It is hoped that the purchasing power will continue to increase after the Farewell Ceremony for Kitchen Gods (on the 23rd of December).

Regarding the purchasing power for Tet in 2024, many other street vendors also said that they have to wait a few more days for the scene of crowded shopping to happen. At this time, many customers are just asking for the price of beef, pork, and scheduling to pick up the goods on the weekend. Some customers who normally buy only 3 – 4 ounces of pork have increased the quantity to a kilogram.

The prices of some items are as follows: dried bamboo shoots range from 280,000 – 350,000 VND/kg depending on the type; vermicelli ranges from 70,000 – 150,000 VND/kg; pork rind costs 40,000 VND/ounce; traditional banh da nem costs 7,000 VND/pack…, pork shoulder costs 110,000 VND/kg, beef brisket, beef tenderloin range from 250,000 – 320,000 VND/kg.

Meanwhile, at traditional markets in La Khe (Ha Dong district), many street vendors said that the goods are readily available so they sell as many as they can, listening for the trends of consumer demand in the market. Street vendors also source quality goods with beautiful designs and prices that are suitable for people in the area.

Dong Trần Quý Cáp market (Dong Da district, Hanoi), on February 1, 2024. Photo: Vu Hong Hai.

Promoting sales through promotions to stimulate shopping demand

Not only traditional markets, but supermarket chains have also focused on promoting many Tet stalls, from quality to design, along with many deep discount programs to stimulate consumer demand. Ms. Phan Hoai Giang (Ha Dong district) said that in the evening, she took her child to Aeon Mall Ha Dong to shop for Tet. Goods this year are abundant, and there is no need to queue for payment for a long time at this moment. “This year is difficult, so I also limit my shopping compared to before. In general, I only need to buy enough for personal use and additional gift baskets for both domestic and foreign sides” – Ms. Giang said.

Meanwhile, Ms. Pham Thuy Duong (Hai Ba Trung district) said that when she went to a supermarket near her house, she saw many promotions for pastries and candy. She chose the option of buying in bulk with friends to get a cheaper price without excessive leftovers.

According to observations at some supermarket chains such as BRG Mart; Hapromart; Haprofood; Go! BigC; Co.opmart/Co.opXtra; WinMart and WinMart+/WIN stores, more than 50% discounts are applied to hundreds of products. Many essential items such as fruits and vegetables, meat and fish, food such as pastries, drinks, and gifts for Tet are discounted up to 30%. At supermarkets, attractive Tet gift baskets with different price ranges are displayed. In terms of product structure, Vietnamese products account for 90% in Vietnam, of which agricultural products account for more than 95%. Accordingly, many Tet gift basket models, from high-end to affordable ones, range from 300,000 to 2 million VND/basket.

As a direct salesperson, Ms. Nguyen Huong, an employee of the BRG Mart supermarket chain, said that the purchasing power at the supermarket is currently good. Essential goods, fresh produce, and special regional products such as bamboo shoots, mushrooms, banh chung, gio cha, pastries… have seen higher purchasing power. To stimulate demand, many products are discounted up to 50%.

Ms. Nguyen Thuy Duong – Deputy Director of BRG Retail Company, said that to meet the fully stocked, economical, and effective shopping needs of people during the end of the year, BRGMart supermarket has partnered with suppliers to stock up on Tet goods, with the volume of goods tripled compared to the other months of the year. Currently, Tet goods at the company’s retail system have filled the warehouses, especially high-quality agricultural products and regional specialties. In addition, the company actively participates in the program to stabilize prices of essential items in Hanoi. It is expected that stabilized prices will account for more than 30% of the total Tet goods volume of the unit.

Representatives of the WinCommerce retail system said that since the beginning of December 2023, WinMart supermarkets and WinMart+/WIN stores nationwide have put Tet goods on the shelves with preferential prices, such as dried goods, pastries, beer, and soft drinks. This year, WinCommerce continues to introduce the “Full-flavored Tet – Gifting with Intention” Tet gift collection with basket models at affordable prices that meet the consumer needs. In addition, the “Celebrate the New Year – Round Flavors of Tet” promotion program takes place from December 28, 2023 to January 10, 2024, bringing a 30% discount to consumers when buying essential items such as fruits and vegetables, meat and fish, food such as pastries, beverages, and Tet gifts.

According to the representative of the Central Retail retail system, at present, Big C supermarket is offering a 50% discount on personal care, beauty care, household items, fresh food, dried food, spices… It is observed that Tet goods at supermarkets and retail stores are dominated by yellow and red colors. Many products are sold in combos or with promotions and gifts to attract customers. At the moment, the purchasing power at supermarkets and retail stores has started to increase, especially on weekends.

Ms. Tran Thi Phuong Lan – Director of Hanoi Department of Industry and Trade said that this year’s Tet goods at wholesale markets or large supermarkets are quite abundant and the prices are stable. To increase the purchasing power of the people, departments and localities are actively implementing activities to connect supply and demand, promote trade, and support the consumption of goods during Tet as well as implement synchronously and effectively the campaign “Prioritize Vietnamese goods”.

Prof. Dr. Nguyen Ba Minh – former Director of the Institute of Economics – Finance said that traditionally, not only this year but every year prices also increase during Tet. However, the degree of increase this year will not be significant because there are many goods available, and the prices of some essential consumer goods are quite stable. Therefore, the pressure on prices of some items from now until the Lunar New Year will increase but not much, and people can be reassured and excited.

According to Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nguyen Duc Do – Deputy Director of the Institute of Economics – Finance (Finance Academy), there will be 3 inflation scenarios in our country. Specifically:

First, if the world economy and Vietnam’s economy grow normally, staples, natural, and other materials are stable, CPI may increase on average by 0.24% per month. The average inflation rate in 2024 is expected to be around 3.5%. This is the highest scenario.

Second, in the low scenario, if the world economy falls into a recession in the second half of 2024 and Vietnam is heavily affected, and the prices of raw materials, natural materials decrease sharply, CPI may increase on average by 0.05% per month. Therefore, the average inflation rate will be 2.5%.

Third, the average level, in case the global economy grows slowly but does not fall into a recession, Vietnam is not affected much, and the prices of raw materials, natural materials decrease slightly, CPI may increase on average by 0.15% per month. At this time, the average inflation rate will be 3.0%.

No matter which scenario, the issue of management cannot be neglected, and caution must be exercised to control inflation to ensure the set target.

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