Saturday, December 27, 2008

Counter-Intuitive Consumer Spending Numbers

The key to understanding the chart is knowing that "Chained" dollars is inflation-adjusted dollars.

Thus, both personal income AND personal consumption dollars rose in November (adjusted for inflation--which is mostly adjusted for the cliff-dive in gasoline prices.)

Those are 'counter-intuitive' because we also know that retail sales were less than expected during the Christmas buying season.

But the numbers are not necessarily 'wrong' just because they are counter-intuitive. Remember that retail sales expectations are conjured up by retailers (!!) not by bean-counters--so expectations are pro-forma numbers--no more, no less.

Something to think about...

HT: NewsBusters

1 comment:

steveegg said...

I said it before, I'll say it again; the recession will be declared over at noon Eastern 1/20/2009 regardless of what the economy is actually doing, not a second before or a second after.