For about a decade, the overall American economy has been consistent, reliable and fairly strong.

However, since Covid swept the globe and governments created man-made economic problems, the state of our economy has quickly shifted into an inflationary disaster, with a recession almost universally expected among Americans and economists and banks.

Because time’s have been so good and shoppers have been reliable consumers, companies have not needed to even work hard to get business, it has just come easily.

But what happens when a recession starts due to the historically high inflation level? 

People are already reexamining spending habits. As the Washington Post reports, there are signs of Americans pulling back on excess spending. In May, U.S. flight bookings decreased 2.3%, and an analysis shows other consumer services slowing as well.

Consumers are still spending, but we’re also seeing a shift where they’re saying, ‘We’re going to postpone our vacation,’ or ‘Maybe I don’t need to buy a new washing machine right away,’ ” said Quincy Krosby, a strategist for LPL Financial. “They are rethinking their consumption levels, and that’s because of higher gasoline prices, lodging and food prices.”

The first response that is playing out right now is companies raising prices to combat inflation and creating new mechanisms to reinstate their revenues. 

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Netflix, which saw a massive pull back from consumers earlier this year, is creating an ad streaming option, in which consumers can pay a lower price for a subscription to the streaming service but also must watch commercials. Snapchat, which has reported poor sales and profits recently, is rolling out a feature where users can pay $3.99 to have access to exclusive and experimental extras. Costco just raised the price of certain items at the food court. Verizon and AT&T recently hiked prices as well.

Plus, the conspicuous “shrinkflation” is causing this the food and beverage industry to quietly decrease the quantity while keeping the price the same.

The second response is when the price hikes come full circle and become an advantage to the consumer. This could happen after companies realize Americans are sticking to tighter budgets long-term. Most big-box businesses haven’t been desperate for buyers in a long time. But with the economic uncertainty could come opportunities for buyers to have leverage over businesses where revenue has slowed.

We’ve seen so many companies go “woke” lately and maybe they will reconsider their vocal political displays when it causes them to go broke.

Customers have not been the priority. The focus has been the profits, the progressive agenda, and the “marginalized” groups that look good in TV commercials – anyone who fits the LGBT and other liberal groups.

Large-scale businesses are obviously desperate to retain profits right now with creative new ways of making money. But let’s just be patient and see when they start coming back looking for business from the majority of Americans. Then ALL customers will be valued again.

Silence Dogood, who writes under Benjamin Franklin’s famous pseudonym, is an intern with the Convention of States Project, a project of Citizens for Self-Governance.