Americans’ personal income fell 0.3 percent in March, or $34.4 billion, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis at the Department of Commerce.
Disposable personal income fell 0.1 percent, or $1.8 billion. Personal consumption expenditures (consumer spending) decreased 0.2 percent or $24.3 billion.
In March, private wage and salary disbursements decreased by $32.9 billion. This is a greater decrease than the $28.8 billion decline in February.
Here are some specific industry numbers:
* goods-producing industries’ payrolls decreased $15.3 billion, more than the $14.2 billion decline in Feb.
* manufacturing industries’ payrolls decreased $7.8 billion, more than the $7.4 billion decline in Feb.
* service-producing industries’ payrolls decreased $17.6 billion, more than the $14.6 billion decrease in Feb.
The government is spending more on wages and payroll – $2.9 billion increase in March, up from $1.9 billion Feb.
Rental income fell $3.3 billion, more than the $2.6 billion decline in February.
Americans are continuing to increase their savings. The savings rate (as percentage of disposable personal income) rose to 4.2 percent in March from 4.0 in February.
It’s interesting how despite the fact that interest rates are very low people aren’t taking out many loans, instead focusing on paying down debt and increasing savings. And that banks and lenders aren’t lowering interest rates as much as they could. I think both lenders and borrowers are still risk-averse. You still need a great credit score to take advantage of the best rates.
How have you changed your spending habits this year? Send us your comments!
April 30, 2009