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Consumer Spending Unchanged
Wednesday, July 3, 2013 7:00 AM

In June, Americans' self-reported daily spending averaged $90, unchanged from May. Upper income spending was $143, slightly lower but not much different from May's $150 or April's $140. Consumer spending, according to this measure, has remained virtually flat since March.

Gallup's measure of Americans' self-reported spending has not weakened despite expectations that consumer spending would deteriorate after federal lawmakers did not renew the payroll tax cut and allowed the sequester to go into effect.

This leveling in spending may be due in part to the gains on Wall Street during the first half of the year. Spending may also reflect Americans' increased optimism about housing prices and the refinance benefits record-low mortgage rates had been providing.

Longer term, Americans' self-reported spending is much stronger than it was from late 2008 to late 2011, but it continues to trail behind early 2008 spending before the recession gained momentum.

Residents living in the West report the highest average daily consumer spending ($97) which could be a result of the strong housing recovery in cities across the region. Southern residents report the next highest average, $92, likely benefiting from both the energy industry and housing. Those living in the East ($84) and Midwest ($83) lag behind, at least in part a result of the apparent slowdown in manufacturing.

 

(Source: Gallup, 1 July 2013)