Even as uncertainty over an economic recession makes headlines, the latest CivicScience data show signs that Americans are feeling a bit of relief when it comes to inflation and spending.

The percentage of U.S. adults who feel “very concerned” about inflation and gas prices continues to drop week-over-week from high points seen in early June. 

At the same time, Americans may feel more open to spending on certain types of goods, such as clothing and household items. Plans to reduce spending due to rising prices have declined across almost all measured categories except for grocery, which remains stable.

However, data also indicate that concerns being in public and labor shortages are rising, which may slow economic recovery. 

Comfort shopping in stores is down three percentage points since last week, the steepest one-week drop seen since January. Comfort attending major public events has also decreased since last week, by two percentage points. Rising Covid cases, monkeypox cases, and crime/violence concerns may all contribute to increasing hesitancy to be around crowds.

Likewise, the percentage of U.S. adults who feel “very concerned” about being in public spaces continues its upward climb for the third week in a row, approaching levels seen in February of this year.

Falling comfort being in public coincides with noticeable staffing shortages, in part due to more workers calling off sick and taking vacation time. For example, almost half of employed adults (45%) report that their employer has been struggling with staffing shortages more than usual lately.

Additional CivicScience data indicates this is especially prevalent in the service industry sector.

Check back next week for more breaking insights on economic recovery and consumer spending.