All Posts Tagged: consumer

U.S. Outlook: Will consumers save the day?

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist

I’m skeptical that U.S. consumers can keep the slowdown, which is centered in manufacturing and business investment, from seeping into other corners of the economy.

U.S. consumers won’t be able to keep spending at a growth rate of more than 3% in the quarters ahead.  We forecast real consumer spending at just below 2% in the second half of 2019 and slipping well below 2% next year, as the risks from the global slowdown, trade wars, tighter financial conditions, and fading fiscal stimulus continue to mount.

For more on this, see highlights of my report below, followed by a link to the full U.S. Outlook, delivered on June 28.

Key observations:
  • We can’t count on the U.S. consumer to keep spending at a growth rate of more than 3%
  • Monthly job growth will continue to slow in the quarters ahead
  • Household balance sheets are fine now but may weaken as home price growth slows
  • Average hourly earnings growth remains below real consumer spending growth rates

Read my full report.

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U.S. Outlook: Should we worry about the consumer?

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
Graph showing up-and-down trends of retail sales over the past several years.

Despite weakness in January and February data, retail sales are still up a healthy 3.1% from a year ago.

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U.S. Outlook: Keep one eye on the fundamentals

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
Graph showing rises and falls - especially recently - in U.S. gas prices.

It’s important to remember that the stock market and the oil market are not the U.S. economy.

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Numbers Count: Consumers take on more credit in October

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Asian woman in a blazer sitting at a desk near a row of windows while talking on the phone and looking at her credit card and laptop.

Here’s my take on the key numbers on the housing market this week.

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U.S. Outlook: A festive holiday forecast this year

Scott Anderson
Chief Economist
Bar chart showing annual holiday sales growth for the past six years.

Our forecast for holiday sales growth this year is 4.0%, which would make it the best year since 2012.

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