MILAN - The heat discourages shopping. This is nothing new, so much so that in many Southern European countries and also in some regions of Southern Italy in the summer, shops only reopen in the late afternoon. This year, however, to denounce this trend is Confesercenti, which estimated a possible loss of up to 3.4 billion euros. In fact, the heat wave not only impacts work, but generally discourages outdoor activity, also reducing the propensity to consume in families.
The shopkeepers registered with the association signal the slowdown and the change in the time slots of those who go shopping in the shops: citizens and tourists give up shopping in the hottest hours of the day, concentrating it in the late afternoon, especially from 6 pm onwards.
The situation is suffering greatly from the markets, traditionally active in the morning hours: "Some shareholders - shares Confesercenti - report drops of up to 30% in sales compared to last July".
The great heat, the rules for businesses: when layoffs can be requested
by Diego Longhin
The impact on bars and restaurants
Anyone who thinks that the warm season encourages outdoor gatherings this year will have to think again: the "caldone" is also putting the restaurant business to the test, which denounces increasingly empty outdoor tables and dehors, even in tourist resorts.
The growth of energy expenditure
Spending and shopping are also discouraged by the increased use of air conditioners which, in addition to having a negative impact on electricity consumption and therefore on the environment, do so on household wallets. In the first week marked by the advent of Charon, these consumptions increased by 7%: an acceleration that risks reducing the benefit of the slowdown in tariffs. At the end of the year, household energy spending should remain at 20 billion, still 6.6 billion more than what was paid in 2020.
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“This situation – declared by Confesercenti – poses a challenge for economic activities and work. We have already invited associates to adopt all preventive measures to minimize the exposure risk of employees, starting with measures that favor staff shifts and the remodulation of business hours, to avoid the hottest moments of the day. However, recourse to layoffs must only take place if strictly necessary: priority must be given to shifts and flexible working hours, especially in tourism activities".