Thursday, April 30, 2015

Earlier from the BEA: Personal Income increased slightly in March, Core PCE prices up 1.3% year-over-year

by Bill McBride on 4/30/2015 11:40:00 AM

Earlier the BEA released the Personal Income and Outlays report for March:

Personal income increased $6.2 billion, or less than 0.1 percent ... in March, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased $53.4 billion, or 0.4 percent.
...
Real PCE -- PCE adjusted to remove price changes -- increased 0.3 percent in March, in contrast to a decrease of less than 0.1 percent in February. ... The price index for PCE increased 0.2 percent in March, the same increase as in February. The PCE price index, excluding food and energy, increased 0.1 percent in March, the same increase as in February.

The March price index for PCE increased 0.3 percent from March a year ago. The March PCE price index, excluding food and energy, increased 1.3 percent from March a year ago.
The following graph shows real Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) through March 2015 (2009 dollars). Note that the y-axis doesn't start at zero to better show the change.

Personal Consumption Expenditures Click on graph for larger image.

The dashed red lines are the quarterly levels for real PCE.

On inflation: the PCE price index as up 0.3% year-over-year (the decline in oil prices pushed down the headline price index).  However core PCE is only up 1.3% year-over-year - still way below the Fed's target.