Tag Archives: consumer

Growth Rebounds

Real GDP growth rose a more-than-expected 4% in the second quarter, after falling a less-than-previously reported 2.1% in the first quarter. The forecast was for a 3% rebound in growth. Benchmark revisions, which include more complete data, helped to reduce the drop in the first quarter. Almost all of the “unexpected rise” in growth in [...]

Inflation Increases at the Gas Pump

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 0.3% in June, after rising 0.4% in May. Almost all of the increase (2/3) was driven by a sharp (3.3%) jump in prices at the gas pump. Food prices decelerated in June, after increases in previous months; prices at the grocery store were flat after some increase in recent [...]

Retail Sales Better then Headline Suggests

Retail sales rose a tepid 0.2% in June, but were revised up for the month of May. That is the second month in a row that sales were revised up; it means we are behind the curve on a much-needed catch-up in consumer spending following the winter doldrums. Vehicle sales tumbled,

Inflation up, Housing down

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 0.4% in May, the largest increase since early 2013. The rise in food prices on the heels of a harsh winter, disruptions to the planting season and drought in the West pushed up the price of food at home by 0.7%, which was no surprise to anyone shopping at [...]

Income OK, Spending Disappoints

The personal income and spending data released today revealed a consumer that is still struggling to recover from the winter doldrums. Real disposable incomes, after adjusting for inflation, rose 0.2% in April, slightly slower than the pace of March, while consumer spending declined both before and after adjusting for inflation. Gains in incomes were extremely [...]

GDP Drop Expected to Reverse in Q2

Real GDP was revised down to show a 1% decline in the first quarter. Most of that drop was due to a larger-than-expected liquidation in inventories, which is good in that it leaves more room for a rebound in the second quarter. Manufacturing activity has already picked up on the heels of better weather.

Prices Rise on Higher Airfares, Gasoline Prices

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 0.3% in April, driven by outsize gains in gasoline prices (other energy prices dropped during the month), airfares and, to a lesser extent, new and used cars. Food prices also picked up as the effects of the drought out West and late start to the planting season in the [...]

Retail Sales Disappoint in April

Retail sales rose a tepid 0.1% in April after being revised up slightly for the month of March. The gains were far short of expectations, given anecdotal reports that consumers were returning to the stores after a wretched winter. On the plus side, spending on apparel and at general merchandise and department stores edged higher [...]

Personal Income and Spending Move up in March

Personal income rose on improving job growth and hours worked in March, combined with increased access to Medicaid via the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Spending increased slightly more than expected

Weak GDP to Affect How Fed Talks about Data

Real GDP grew a negligible 0.1% in the first quarter of 2014, after expanding 2.6% in the fourth quarter of 2013. Much of the weakness is attributed to extreme weather, although some decreases were larger than expected. It’s important to note that GDP for this initial estimate is compiled from the earliest data available for [...]