Czech Radio survey: Most Czech households still manage to make ends meet

Despite rising food and energy prices, one in three Czech households still manage quite well, or even very well, on their monthly budget, according to the results of a long-term survey carried out by Czech Radio and the PAQ Research agency.

According to the survey, carried out in May among 1,600 respondents, one fifth of them find it "difficult" to make ends meet. The situation is getting worse especially among seniors who live alone. On the other hand, self-employed people and people with above-average incomes regard their situation as more or less the same.

Daniel Prokop | Photo: Lenka Kabrhelová,  Czech Radio

This is mainly the case of households whose residual income has not been significantly affected by increasing prices so far. However, some of them may run into problems with the onset of winter if energy prices increase further, says sociologist Daniel Prokop:

“The government aid should focus on people, who may run into problems during the winter, to help them better prepare for the situation. They should get financial aid for example to change their heating system, get better insulation or change their place of residence,” he says.

David Navrátil | Photo: Česká spořitelna

The State Environmental Fund has already registered a record interest in subsidies for energy-saving measures and The Environment Ministry is planning to launch another subsidy programme later this year for small energy-saving projects.

According to David Navrátil, chief economist at Česká spořitelna, virtually all Czech households managed to save money during the Covid pandemic.

“Richer households have definitely saved more, mainly investing in financial assets or real estate. Poorer households saved less, partly because of using a large part of their spending on food purchases and housing-related costs.”

Jana Steckerová | Photo:  archive of Jana Steckerová

Despite rising food and energy prices, people are not yet withdrawing money from their savings accounts, says Jana Steckerová, an economist at ČSOB.

“People are aware of the high inflation and they are trying to protect their savings. Therefore we can see a shift from standard accounts to accounts with better interest rates.”