Latest inflation report explained: Americans are over-leveraged, and still spending

August 2, 2022

Customers shop at a grocery store in Mount Prospect, Ill., on April 1, 2022. Consumer prices surged 8.6% last month from 12 months earlier, faster than April’s year-over-year surge of 8.3%, the Labor Department said Friday, June 10, 2022. Nam Y. Huh, Associated Press

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) has released its monthly report, outlining the state of consumer spending in the face of growing inflation. While consumer spending exceeded expectations, the impact of inflation on low-income Americans is increasing.

What the report says:

According to the BEA, the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index “is known for capturing inflation (or deflation) across a wide range of consumer expenses and reflecting changes in consumer behavior.”

In June, consumer spending exceeded some experts’ predictions. A Reuters poll showed economists predicting a 0.9% increase in spending, but it increased by 1.1%, or $181.1 billion. Adjusting for inflation (to 2012 rates), personal expenditures only increased by 0.1%.

The PCE price index increased by 1%, almost doubling the 0.6% seen in May. June’s PCE index, compared to last year’s, is 6.8% higher — the difference setting a new 40-year high according to CNN.

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This article was originally published on Deseret Morning News on August 1, 2022.