Charts of the Week

U.S. Personal Spending

Chart of the Week for September 13, 2019 - September 19, 2019

U.S. Personal Spending increased in July 2019.

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis publishes a monthly measure of spending by household sector. Economists consider it an important measure of consumer spending activity and a leading contributor to Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The chart above shows the monthly percentage change in U.S. Personal Spending from July 2018 through July 2019.

Personal spending has been generally positive over the past year ranging from a high of 0.8% growth in March 2019 to a decline of -0.9% in December 2018. The July 2019 increase of 0.4% followed the June 2019 increase of 0.2%. Economists noted both positive and negative factors in the July personal spending results. Positive factors included a strong labor market, continued wage growth, and strong consumer confidence. Negative factors included the trade situation with China, which could cause higher prices for U.S. consumers.

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