Media Alert: Adobe Digital Price Index: Online Inflation Hits Another High in December
- Online prices increased 3.1% year-over-year
- December marked 19th consecutive month of online
- Consumers spent record $855 billion online in 2021,
demonstrating strong growth in digital economy
Adobe (Nasdaq:ADBE) today announced the latest online inflation
data from the Adobe Digital Price Index (DPI). In December 2021,
online prices increased 3.1% year-over-year (YoY) and 0.8%
month-over-month (MoM). Meanwhile, consumer spending online for all
of 2021 reached a record $855 billion, an increase of 9% YoY,
attesting to the strength of the digital economy overall.
December’s price increases marked the 19th consecutive month of YoY
online inflation and followed the record high of November 2021,
when online prices increased 3.5% YoY. In December, groceries and
apparel were standout categories, with grocery prices seeing their
highest annual increase in more than a year (4.9% YoY, 0.7% MoM).
Apparel increased 16.6% YoY (0.6% MoM).
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The DPI provides the most comprehensive view into how much
consumers pay for goods online. Powered by Adobe Analytics, it
analyzes one trillion visits to retail sites and over 100 million
SKUs across 18 product categories: electronics, apparel,
appliances, books, toys, computers, groceries, furniture/bedding,
tools/home improvement, home/garden, pet products, jewelry, medical
equipment/supplies, sporting goods, personal care products,
flowers/related gifts, nonprescription drugs and office
“Inflation online is showing no signs of easing, as durable
consumer demand is being met with the same, persistent supply
challenges that produced over six billion out-of-stock messages
online this holiday season,” said Patrick Brown, vice president of
growth marketing and insights, Adobe. “As consumers contend with
higher offline prices for everything from gas to rent, they are
finding that e-commerce is still a less expensive option when it
comes to goods like toys, electronics and even jewelry.”
In December 2021, 12 of the 18 categories tracked by the DPI saw
YoY price increases, with apparel rising faster than any other
category. Price drops were observed in six categories: electronics,
office supplies, jewelry, books, toys and computers.
On a MoM basis, 13 of the 18 categories saw December price
increases, with price drops observed in five categories, including
toys, pet products, home/garden, computers and flowers/related
Notable Categories in the Adobe Digital Price Index (December
- Groceries: Prices were up 4.9% YoY (up 0.7% MoM), the
highest increase on an annual basis since October 2020, when prices
jumped 5.2% YoY. It is the only category that has moved in lockstep
with the Consumer Price Index, which captures prices consumers are
paying in physical stores.
- Apparel: Prices were up 16.6% YoY (up 0.6% MoM). This is
the ninth consecutive month where online prices have risen on an
annual basis in a category that typically sees consistent periods
of deflation when seasonal discounts kick in.
- Appliances: Prices were up 4.1% YoY (up 3.0%
MoM). This marks the 20th consecutive month of inflation for the
category, at a time when consumers are keen to invest in their
homes. Over the holiday season (November 1 to December 31), online
sales for appliances doubled compared to pre-season (September
2021) levels. Furniture and bedding followed a similar trend, after
20 consecutive months of inflation, where December 2021 prices were
up 3.3% YoY and up 0.8% MoM.
- Tools & Home Improvement: Prices were up 7.1% YoY (a
record high for the category) and up 1.0% MoM, marking the 13th
consecutive month of online inflation as consumers continue to
spend more in this category. Over the holiday season (November 1 to
December 31), online sales in the category grew by 1.7 times
pre-season (September 2021) levels.
- Electronics: Prices were down 2.6% YoY (up 0.4% MoM).
This is a greater price drop compared to November 2021, when prices
for products in the category were only down 0.4% YoY and nearly
moved into inflationary territory for the first time since Adobe
began tracking price trends in 2014.
Adobe Holiday Season Recap Report: For additional
insights on the 2021 holiday shopping season (November 1 to
December 31) including consumer spend online, out-of-stock levels
and more, find Adobe’s recap report here.
The DPI is modeled after the Consumer Price Index, published by
the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and uses the Fisher Price
Index to track online prices. The Fisher Price Index uses
quantities of matched products purchased in the current period
(month) and a previous period (previous month) to calculate the
price changes by category. Adobe’s analysis is weighted by the real
quantities of the products purchased in the two adjacent
Adobe uses a combination of Adobe Sensei, Adobe’s AI and machine
learning framework, and manual effort to segment the products into
the categories defined by the CPI manual. The methodology was first
developed alongside renowned economists Austan Goolsbee and Pete
Adobe is changing the world through digital experiences. For
more information, visit www.adobe.com.
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either registered trademarks or trademarks of Adobe in the United
States and/or other countries. All other trademarks are the
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