Published On: Tue, Jun 22nd, 2021
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Consumers, Not Companies, Bearing Brunt of Inflation: Report

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WASHINGTON—Widespread commodity shortages are raising production costs for many consumer brands, from Coca-Cola to Hershey’s chocolate to Colgate. However, companies so far see inflation as a boon to their profits, since they can pass higher costs on to consumers without facing competitive pressure. More S&P 500 companies are commenting on inflation than normal during their earnings conference calls, according to FactSet, a financial data provider. While executives have raised concerns about soaring raw material costs, a closer look at companies in the consumer goods sector showed that the majority of them haven’t reduced earnings predictions for this year, as they’ve found ways to mitigate inflation. “At least for companies in the consumer staples sector, it does not appear higher inflation is having a negative impact on full-year earnings and net profit margins at this time,” John Butters, senior earnings analysts at FactSet, wrote in a report. “Overall, 18 of the …

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