The supply-chain crisis is rattling Americans as shipping delays hit historic highs

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The supply-chain crisis is rattling Americans as shipping delays hit historic highs
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  • A survey of over 1,000 US consumers found that worries over the shipping crisis are mounting.
  • The majority of Americans surveyed have seen shortages and changed their buying habits as a result.
  • The survey results align with industry experts' concerns over an industry in "crisis mode."

The majority of Americans worry that the ongoing supply-chain crisis will upset their life plans, according to a new study from Oracle.

The survey of over 1,000 US consumers found that 82% of Americans are concerned about how the disruptions in the global supply chain will impact their life plans, including birthdays, holidays, and the ability to purchase necessary supplies. The study results were published on Wednesday and the respondents were surveyed from September 9 through 10.

The supply chain is poised to have a major impact on holiday plans this year. Executives have warned customers to start buying holiday gifts as soon as possible, as thousands of shipping containers face weeks of delays.

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The majority of respondents were also concerned the issue would impact their ability to buy what they need, as well as celebrate the holiday season. 92% say they're concerned the issue will only get worse - a likely result, transportation workers and executives have warned. Earlier this week, the executive director of the Port of Long Beach said the industry is in a "crisis mode." On Wednesday, workers warned world leaders of an impending "systems collapse" if the issues in the industry are not addressed.

The study also found that over half of Americans fear the supply-chain crisis will never end. The supply-chain snags that have threatened the economy since the pandemic started have also changed consumers' buying habits. Oracle's survey found that 91% of respondents consider the supply chain when they make a purchase - a large increase from 45% before 2020.

"These insights paint a clear picture that the ongoing global supply-chain issues are impacting many Americans," Jon Chorley, group vice president of SCM product strategy and chief sustainability officer at Oracle, said. "Ultimately, the supply chain is where brand promises are either met or broken. Organizations that are able to provide the supply chain efficiency and transparency that customers expect will be rewarded with greater customer loyalty and accelerated business growth."

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87% of the respondents said they have seen the impact of the crisis first hand due to shortages, delays, and rationing - an issue that has spurred 91% of Americans to change their buying behavior by stocking up on items, buying items ahead of time, and monitoring shortages. At the onset of the pandemic, a similar buying frenzy pushed shortages of necessary goods like toilet paper - an item that stores like Costco have already started rationing once again.

The supply-chain crisis has many US residents fearful of shortages, but security is something that many appear more than willing to pay for. The Oracle survey found that 81% of respondents were willing to pay a premium price to avoid delivery delays, while over half would stop buying from a brand after one to three delays or disruptions.

Several major companies have also moved to pay extra to avoid shipping delays and shortages. Last week, Insider reported Walmart, Lululemon, and Ikea were chartering their own container ships, while Home Depot was flying in power tools.

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