Since vaccines against the coronavirus first became available last fall, mass vaccinations have been held up as the one and only way to get consumers to bring back the consumer economy.
But early financial data shows vaccinated Americans are not spending money at pre-pandemic levels. Instead, the consumers who’ve spent the most money this year are those who haven’t been vaccinated, and don’t plan to be, according to spending data from Cardify.ai, a rewards platform that tracks consumers’ credit-card spending.
The company last month asked its roughly 1 million members about their vaccine status, and then mapped the answers of the 1,600 who responded to their spending on entertainment, dining out and personal services (a category that includes salons and barbershops).
While spending is rebounding across all categories of consumers, it’s rising most among people who aren’t vaccinated. In March, the unvaccinated crowd spent 60% more on personal care than they did in January 2020, while vaccinated consumers spent 30% more during that same time. Those who said they were “not yet” vaccinated, indicating they planned to get the shot, spent 20% less.