Household Spending Drops for First Time in Months

December 29, 2020

Household spending in the U.S. fell in November, the first decline in seven months. After spending big over the summer, consumers were keeping their wallets closed amid surging cases of coronavirus.

Spending was down by 0.4%, according to the Commerce Department. Spending on services like restaurants fell, as did purchases of big-ticket items like cars and home appliances.

Household incomes also fell as federal aid programs have begun to expire. Total household income, which includes all wages, investment returns, and government aid Americans received, was down 1.1% for the month, the third such decline in four months. Despite the drop, household income remains up 2% from February’s pre-pandemic level.

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