Economic Growth

Commerce Dept: Disposable Personal Incomes Down, Personal Spending Up

Down .2 percent, up .4 percent


Personal income in the U.S. came in nearly unchanged in the month of December, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Friday, although the report still showed a bigger than expected increase in personal spending for the month.

The report said personal income inched up by less than a tenth of a percent in December after rising by 0.2 percent in November. Economists had been expecting another 0.2 percent increase.

Meanwhile, disposable personal income, or personal income less personal current taxes, dropped by 0.2 percent in December after inching up by 0.1 percent in the previous month.

The modest drop in disposable personal income was partly due to a $14.3 billion decrease in farm proprietors' income.

At the same time, the Commerce Department said personal spending climbed by 0.4 percent in December following a 0.6 percent increase in November. The spending growth exceeded economist estimates for a 0.2 percent uptick.