Personal Income and Outlays for February 2010 was released today. PCE is what the press calls consumer spending and it rose 0.3%. The below graph shows the hit Americans have taken in good old fashioned income this recession.
Personal income increased $1.2 billion, or less than 0.1 percent, and disposable personal income (DPI) increased $1.6 billion, or less than 0.1 percent, in February, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased $34.7 billion, or 0.3 percent.
In January,personal income increased $30.4 billion, or 0.3 percent, DPI decreased $26.0 billion, or 0.2 percent, and PCE increased $38.5 billion, or 0.4 percent, based on revised estimates.
Later in the report we have proprietors income. This is small business, the self-employed. Farmers are clearly getting hammered.
Proprietors' income decreased $6.1 billion in February, the same decrease as in January. Farm proprietors' income decreased $7.1 billion, the same decrease as in January. Nonfarm proprietors' income increased $1.0 billion, the same increase as in January.
Personal savings has dropped, to 3.1% of disposable personal income.
To sum, Personal income was flat, wages and salaries were flat, real disposable income was flat and consumer prices were flat, yet real spending increased 0.3%. Flat means insignificant change.