ENERGY INEFFICIENT

The lower down the income ladder, the more households spend on gas and utilities. Volatility in energy prices means that consumers could end up spending even more of their income on gas and utilities, potentially eating into retail sales. As a whole, for income levels under $30,000, average households spend 4.2 percent of that income on gas and 9.3 percent on utilities.

INCOME RANGE UTILITIES GAS
LESS THAN $5,000 7.90% 4.10%
$5,000 TO $9,999 10.3 4.2
$10,000 TO $14,999 10.2 4.0
$15,000 TO $19,999 9.3 4.2
$20,000 TO $29,999 8.7 4.3
$30,000 TO $39,999 7.9 4.3
$40,000 TO $49,999 7.7 4.2
$50,000 TO $69,999 6.8 4.1
$70,000 TO $79,999 6.5 3.9
$80,000 TO $99,999 6.0 3.6
$100,000 OR OVER 4.8 2.7
ALL INCOME LEVELS 6.7 3.7
Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, JP Morgan

BASKET PRICE SNAPSHOT

Credit Suisse compares the pricing of a basket of 50 items in Chicago and 60 items in the Dalls-Ft. Worth area at seven mass channel retailers. The review compares pricing of a basket of times across health and beauty, household goods and food products. It shows how far some retailers have come in competing with Wal-Mart and how far they still need to go. Wal-Mart rules the roost on food and health and beauty, but Target is not far behind and actually edges out Wal-Mart when it comes to household products.

CHICAGO BASKET PRICE, INCLUDING SALE PRICE AND LOYALTY CARD
Walgreens CVS Wal-Mart Target Food 4 Less (Kroger) Jewel (Albertson's) Dominick's (Safeway)
Total Food $52.74 $52.73 $38.86 $42.59 $46.63 $52.37 $53.57
% Above Lowest Chain 35.7 35.7 0 9.6 20 34.8 37.8
Total Health and Beauty $99.14 $97.41 $84.35 $84.72 $101.02 $104.68 $102.61
% Above Lowest Chain 17.5 15.5 0 0.4 19.8 24.1 21.6
Total Household Products $54.22 $51.25 $40.02 $39.77 $43.34 $52.00 $45.09
% Above Lowest Chain 36.3 28.9 0.6 0 9 30.8 13.4
Grand Total $206.10 $201.39 $163.23 $167.08 $190.99 $209.05 $201.26
% Above Lowest Chain 26.3 23.4 0 2.4 17 28.1 23.3
TEXAS BASKET PRICE, INCLUDING SALE PRICE AND LOYALTY CARD
Walgreens CVS Wal-Mart Target Kroger Albertson's Tom Thumb (Safeway)
Total Food $67.00 $72.85 $53.72 $56.38 $58.53 $70.31 $63.46
% Above Lowest Chain 24.7 35.6 0 5 8.9 30.9 18.1
Total Health and Beauty $113.00 $113.39 $99.77 $101.46 $116.64 $129.15 $117.94
% Above Lowest Chain 13.3 13.7 0 1.7 16.9 29.4 18.2
Total Household Products $65.66 $59.34 $49.94 $49.56 $57.17 $65.31 $66.97
% Above Lowest Chain 32.5 19.7 0.8 0 15.3 31.8 35.1
Grand Total $245.65 $245.58 $203.43 $207.40 $232.33 $264.77 $248.37
% Above Lowest Chain 20.8 $20.70 0 2 14.2 30.2 22.1