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Friday, September 28, 2012

Personal Income increased 0.1% in August, Spending increased 0.5%

by Calculated Risk on 9/28/2012 08:45:00 AM

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

Personal income increased $15.0 billion, or 0.1 percent ... in August, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased $57.2 billion, or 0.5 percent.
Real PCE -- PCE adjusted to remove price changes -- increased 0.1 percent in August, compared with an increase of 0.4 percent in July. ... The price index for PCE increased 0.4 percent in August, compared with an increase of less than 0.1 percent in July. The PCE price index, excluding food and energy, increased 0.1 percent in August, the same increase as in July.
Personal saving -- DPI less personal outlays -- was $444.8 billion in August, compared with $492.2 billion in July. Personal saving as a percentage of disposable personal income was 3.7 percent in August, compared with 4.1 percent in July
The following graph shows real Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) through August (2005 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.

This graph shows real PCE by month for the last few years. The dashed red lines are the quarterly levels for real PCE.

Using the two-month method, it appears real PCE will increase around 1.3% annualized in Q3 - another weak quarter for GDP growth (June PCE was weak, so maybe PCE will increase 1.6%).

A key point is the PCE price index has only increased 1.5% over the last year, and core PCE is up only 1.6%. In August, core PCE increase at a 1.3% annualized rate.