School of Economics and Finance

Without clear information expect worried shoppers to carry on panic buying

20 March 2020

There are few sights more unnerving than bare supermarket shelves; proof, perhaps, that Britain’s legendary ability to keep calm and carry on may be wearing thin. Stuck in isolation, worried shoppers do not know what their compatriots will do. Coronavirus sufferers have no symptoms that require excessive amounts of lavatory paper so there is no need to stock up unless others are doing it. For Professor of Economics, Professor Roberto Veneziani, the key in panic buying is if everyone believes it’s optimal to stockpile, it becomes optimal to stockpile, but if everyone believes it’s not optimal, it’s not. This is why clear information is essential, he says.

Reported on the Daily Telgraph