Many Petersburgers have become significantly poorer in 2022: both emigrants and those who remain in the city. This is the results of a new study “Paper” and other data.

At the end of December, we asked readers to talk about changes in their work, income and consumption strategies. Read how economic problems affected the relationship of respondents with loved ones, how much wages were reduced, and what part of readers only benefited from the crisis.

677 readers participated in the survey. By age, gender and education, they reflect the entire audience “Paper”. At the same time, there is a noticeable shift in the financial situation: in comparison with previous studies, the audience of the December survey is poorer. There may be two reasons for this: the topic turned out to be closer to those who have problems with money, or readers “Paper” generally became poorer. Probably both are true.

Among the survey participants in December 2022, there were more of those who do not have enough money even for food, and those who find it difficult to buy clothes. Nevertheless, 5% of the respondents can easily buy a new car, 1% – an apartment, and another 28% – a refrigerator or a washing machine.

Nearly two-thirds of respondents are employed full-time. One in ten is a freelancer and one in ten is unemployed. 5% study, 4% have their own business and another 4% work part time.

12% work without an employment contract, 4% – under a temporary contract.

Nearly a third of those surveyed said that their incomes have fallen by 20% or more this year – and this is without inflation, that is, the real drop is even more. Another 21% saw their incomes decline, but not as much.

At the same time, the income of another third of readers increased. Every eighth respondent has 20% or more.

This may indicate that a redistribution of cash flows has taken place in society: some have lost from this, others have benefited, although there are fewer of them.

But half of those whose incomes rose in nominal terms still feel poorer than in 2021. Only 13% each feel richer or the same.

The drop in the standard of living concerns both those who remain in Russia and emigrants (about 20% of them in the December survey). The latter is confirmed by other data: sociologists from the OutRush project figured outthat the economic situation of Russians worsened after emigration.

“I earn a little more than before, a young person earns 20 percent more than before, but we live worse because of constant relocations, emigration, an unsuccessful attempt to start a business in Europe. All the savings were gone in a year, we are in the red and we get loans from my mother, ”says one of the respondents “Paper”.

A similar division into winners and losers is also relevant for work. Almost 15% of readers answered that they had lost their jobs due to the war and the economic crisis, 12% – that they had lost part-time jobs. At the same time, almost 8%, thanks to the war and the crisis, found a job that pays better or suits them better, and 1% started their own business.

For some, the worsening economic situation helped them decide to give up a job that did not suit them and look for a new one.

More than 100 respondents spoke about other changes in their work. This:

  • Problems in business: outflow of customers, destruction of ties with foreign partners, cancellation of projects, drop in revenue. “Yes, everyone has an ass in business. And the clients left, ”the reader notes. “Paper”. “My husband and I business has died down, next year we will liquidate the IP,” the reader confirms.
  • Reducing and delaying salaries, the abolition of premiums and corporate health insurance programs.
  • Difficulty finding work. “I haven’t been able to find a job for four months, the competition is fierce,” the respondent complains.
  • Problems with work due to ideological differences with superiors or customers, deterioration of the atmosphere at work. “Total control has appeared”, “Brainwashing has begun,” readers say.
  • Getting a new specialty.

Due to problems with work and falling incomes, many readers have become economically dependent on a partner (partnership), parents and other relatives. This happened to both women and men. “Due to the loss of my job and dependence on a partner, I try to spend money only on the essentials, severely limiting myself,” the respondent explains.

18% answered that in 2022 they began to help relatives more with money. Several people wrote that due to differences in views with loved ones they lost their financial support.

Nearly half of respondents said their financial strategies have changed in 2022.

The main trends are:

  • Reducing consumption (including food, clothing, household goods, cosmetics). Some readers have stopped buying things, not excluding that they will have to leave the country.
  • Refusal of holidays, repairs, trips to the theater, cinema and cafes.
  • Refusal of treatment (for example, from the installation of braces).
  • Creation of savings, airbags (including to emigrate).
  • The growth of spending and the conscious rejection of savings. “Spend everything, we’ll die tomorrow”, “We have to live in the end”, “I live in the present – who knows what else my grandfather will come up with”, “I’ve become easier to spend money on something that will definitely make me very happy, because I’m not sure whether it will come at all tomorrow,” readers explain.
  • Choice of cheaper products, shops, goods with discounts.
  • Refusal to invest in securities.

“[Стратегия] changed many times from “I save every penny”, to “nuclear war is coming soon, I buy everything I want”. But with an increase in income, I managed to find a golden mean – both to save money and buy what I want, ”says the respondent.

Some readers wrote that for the first time they began to use financial planning tools, keep track of income and expenses.

Now the majority of the respondents have savings, but only 17% of them have significant savings. Only 1.5% of readers have significant passive income – for example, from renting an apartment.

Despite the difficult financial situation that many respondents wrote about, only 15% in 2022 began to use loans more than in 2021. The majority of survey participants still do not have loans.