Antecedents and consequences of panic buying: The case of COVID-19

Prentice, Catherine ORCID: and Quach, Sara and Thaichon, Park (2022) Antecedents and consequences of panic buying: The case of COVID-19. International Journal of Consumer Studies, 46 (1). pp. 132-146. ISSN 1470-6423


Panic buying emerged as a significant phenomenon during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study draws on the scarcity principle, crowd psychology and contagion theory to investigate the antecedents and consequences of panic buying. The antecedents included in this study are government measures, media and peer influence and the fear of missing out. The consequences are founded on a sense of security and guilt. Retailer intervention is included as a moderator to the proposed main effects. Data were collected from 341 consumers who engaged in panic buying and were residents of the United States and Australia during the COVID-19 pandemic. Structural equation modelling was employed to test the proposed model. The results show that the proposed antecedents (except fear of missing out) were significantly related to panic buying, which in turn had a significant influence on panic buyers' psychological outcomes. The moderating effects of retailer intervention varied across different product categories. Discussion and implications of these findings are provided for policy makers, customers and practitioners.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 21 Jul 2022 04:24
Last Modified: 10 Oct 2022 05:08
Uncontrolled Keywords: consumer behaviour, COVID-19, crowd psychology, interventions, panic buying, public policy, social media
Fields of Research (2020): 35 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 3507 Strategy, management and organisational behaviour > 350799 Strategy, management and organisational behaviour not elsewhere classified
35 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 3506 Marketing > 350699 Marketing not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 28 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 2801 Expanding knowledge > 280106 Expanding knowledge in commerce, management, tourism and services
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