Monday, May 01, 2017

Personal Income increased 0.2% in March, Spending increased less than 0.1%

by Bill McBride on 5/01/2017 08:36:00 AM

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

Personal income increased $40.0 billion (0.2 percent) in March according to estimates released today by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. ... personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased $5.7 billion (less than 0.1 percent).
...
Real PCE increased 0.3 percent. The PCE price index decreased 0.2 percent. Excluding food and energy, the PCE price index decreased 0.1 percent.
The March PCE price index increased 1.8 percent year-over-year and the February PCE price index, excluding food and energy, increased 1.6 percent year-over-year.

The following graph shows real Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) through March 2017 (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.

The increase in personal income was below expectations,  and the increase in PCE was close to expectations.