Consumer spending up; modest holiday retail season predicted

Publish Date: 
Dec 6, 2013
By Vince Guerrieri

LEXINGTON, Mass. -- Consumer spending rose in October, but economic forecasters predict a modest holiday retail season.

According to a monthly report from IHS Global Insight, personal spending as well as spending adjusted for price increases increased 0.3 percent in the month of October. According to Chris Christopher Jr., director of consumer economics for IHS, consumer spending was likely to increase in November based on spending on cars and household utilities.

However, Christopher cautioned that sales of other items used to estimate consumer spending – non-auto retail, gasoline, building materials – will probably drop in November. Christopher estimates that real consumer spending will rise around 2 percent for the year.

Saving is down, from 5.2 percent in September to 4.8 percent in October, and although personal income fell 0.1 percent for the month, wages and salaries increased 0.1 percent.