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Nielsen: Dollar stores not just for low-income shoppers


ORLANDO, Fla. The recession has been a boon to dollar stores, which attracted increased consumer spending in 2008, including spending among high and middle income shoppers, according to Nielsen research.

According to Nielsen, its analysis of consumer shopping habits shows consumers at all income levels shopping more at dollar stores, with high income shoppers spending 18% more at dollar stores in the second half of 2008 compared to the prior year. Dollar stores are outpacing major consumer packaged goods (CPG) channels among both low and high income shoppers.

“The troubled economy and rising costs in health care, education, and food have caused everyone -- even those with high incomes -- to rethink where they purchase basic household goods,” said Jeff Gregori, VP retail services for Nielsen. “Five years ago, shoppers weren’t sure what they would find in a dollar store. Today, dollar stores are delivering more consistent selection and value, and consumers are shopping dollar stores more regularly to fulfill their basic CPG needs.”

Despite the increase in spending among high and middle income shoppers, low income shoppers are still the primary dollar store customer. According to Nielsen’s research, 45% of dollar store sales are from low annual household incomes (below $30,000), 47% from middle incomes (between $30,000 and $99,900), and only eight percent from high incomes (greater than $100,000).

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