consumer spending

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Dow Breaks 18K for First Time

Plus consumer spending, business investment help US economy grow 5% in 3rd Q

(Newser) - The Dow Jones Industrial Average cruised past 18,000 for the first time ever today, the AP reports. The S&P 500 also broke records this morning, rising six points (0.3%) to 2,084. This followed on the heels of news that the US economy grew at a sizzling... More »

Household Debt Takes Biggest Leap Since 2007

And that might mean good things for the economy

(Newser) - US household debt spiked by $241 billion in the fourth quarter, up to $11.5 trillion, according to a new report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. It's the biggest increase seen since the financial crisis, and the first on a year-over-year basis. That might actually be... More »

Sorry, Ketchup, Americans Love Mayo More

Or, at least, our wallets do, new data shows

(Newser) - You put it on hot dogs, hamburgers, fries, and a whole slew of other stuff, but ketchup doesn't even come close to the king of condiments. That would be mayonnaise—$2 billion of which is sold in the US each year, compared with around $800 million of the red... More »

For First Time in 4 Years, Americans Borrowing More

Household debts up 0.3%, perhaps showing economy rebounding

(Newser) - American household debt rose in the fourth quarter of 2012, the first rise since 2008 when the recession was in full force, reports the Wall Street Journal . Debts rose 0.3% to $11.34 trillion, including $553 billion in new mortgages, the single biggest source of consumer debt. "There... More »

Retailers: Payroll Tax Hit Is Going to Hurt

Nearly half of consumers say they'll spend less: survey

(Newser) - Major retailers are preparing for customers with less cash in their pockets, thanks in part to the newly restored payroll tax, the Wall Street Journal reports. Rising gas prices aren't helping, either. Some 45.7% of consumers plan to spend less in the face of 2% lower take-home pay,... More »

US Retail Sales Rise 0.5%

Holiday sales indicate that no one was worried about fiscal cliff

(Newser) - US consumers increased their spending at retail businesses in December, buying more autos, furniture, and clothing. Steady job growth and lower gas prices kept consumers shopping for the holidays, despite worries about potential tax increases. The Commerce Department said today that retail sales rose 0.5% in December from November,... More »

Consumer Spending Jumps 0.8%

It's the best report in 7 months, but outpaces income growth

(Newser) - Americans increased their spending in September at twice the rate their income rose, a sign of confidence in the economy. The Commerce Department says consumer spending increased 0.8% in September, the best showing since February. Personal income rose 0.4%, an improvement from a slight 0.1% gain in... More »

Consumer Spending Rises —Because Gas Is Up

Which means people might have to cut back elsewhere soon

(Newser) - Americans boosted spending in August even though their income barely grew. But much of the increase went to pay higher gas prices, a sign they may have to cut back elsewhere in coming months. The Commerce Department says consumer spending rose 0.5% in August from July, the biggest jump... More »

Coming to Cities: Mini Target, Petite Walmart

Major retailers open up tiny, urban-friendly outlets

(Newser) - Major chains are starting to think outside the big-box, at least where cities are involved. Stores like Walmart, Target, and Office Depot are willing to do what it takes to follow young adults who grew up in the 'burbs to their new urban homes, even if that means shrinking... More »

Great, Now the Private Sector's Tanking, Too

Signs of life in consumer spending might help recovery, say economists

(Newser) - The private sector has been the lone strength in the US economy since 2009, with business investment and corporate earnings leading the underwhelming recovery. Until now, that is. As the dollar strengthens and economies around the world are slowing, the private sector appears headed for a tough patch, writes Paul... More »

Black Friday Sets $11.4B Record

Consumers shrug off unemployment, pessimism, and spend

(Newser) - Holiday shoppers put their economic fears on layaway on Friday, and instead bought and charged their way to a record huge Black Friday, reports Bloomberg . With $11.4 billion spent at retail stores and malls on Friday, spending was up 6.6% from last year, the biggest one-year gain since... More »

Economy Shows Signs of Life: GDP Jumps 2.5%

Meanwhile, new unemployment claims fell

(Newser) - The US’ total economic output shot up 2.5% from July through September, after two dismal quarters of rising just 0.4% and 1.3%, according to a new GDP report released today. Consumers amped up their spending on both durable goods and services, and business investments soared 16.3%—... More »

Consumer Spending Jumps

Salaries and wages increase, too, in July report

(Newser) - The Commerce Department delivered a welcome bit of positive economic news today, reporting that consumer spending shot up 0.8% in July. That's the metric's best move in five months, and more or less laps the 0.4% to 0.5% economists had expected, the Wall Street Journal... More »

Next 12 Months: No Recession, but Slow Growth

Risk of recession at 26%; unemployment likely 9% at year's end

(Newser) - Despite a bombardment of bad news in recent weeks, economists don’t expect another recession over the next 12 months—but economic growth will barely be perceptible in that period, an AP poll of top economists finds. They expect high unemployment and weak consumer spending to dog the US into... More »

Brace Yourself for Even Worse 2nd Recession

Could devastate a still-ailing economy, writes Catherine Rampell

(Newser) - Economists say we could be headed for a second recession—and if they’re right, it’s poised to be even more devastating than the first, writes Catherine Rampell in the New York Times . That’s because the starting point for the second dip would be our current weak economy,... More »

Recession Worse Than Thought; GDP Growth Weak

Economy grew just 1.3% over past three months

(Newser) - We already knew the Great Recession was the worst in decades, but in fact we were even worse off than we thought, new figures show. The economy shrank 5.1% over the course of the recession, from 2007 to 2009—1 percentage point worse than the earlier estimate of 4.... More »

It's the Busted Consumer Bubble, Stupid

With no consumer spending, economy keeps dragging

(Newser) - There are plenty of theories and explanations for the economic crisis that has afflicted the United States for years now, but they all miss the element of the continuing malaise—it's really about the bursting of the decades-long consumer spending bubble, writes David Leonhardt in the New York Times... More »

Consumer Spending Weakest in 20 Months

May showed first decline since January 2010

(Newser) - Americans spent in May at the weakest pace in 20 months, a sign that high gas prices and unemployment are holding back the economy. Consumer spending was unchanged, the worst result since September 2009, the Commerce Department said today. When adjusted for inflation, spending actually dropped 0.1%—the first... More »

Walmart: Gas Prices Hurting Our Shoppers

CEO says customers 'running out of money'

(Newser) - Walmart shoppers are running out of cash, pinched by high gas prices and unemployment, the company’s CEO said this week. “We’re seeing core consumers under a lot of pressure,” Mike Duke said at a retail industry gathering, according to CNN . “There’s no doubt that... More »

Consumer Spending Up... Thanks to Gas Prices

Personal income up 0.3%, but inflation hits hard

(Newser) - Consumer spending rose at its fastest rate in four months in February—but that’s in large part due to rising gas prices. Consumer spending climbed 0.7%, while personal income rose 0.3% following January’s 1.2% jump, the AP notes. Both gains reflected a Social Security tax... More »

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