Muted Gains Seen in Personal Income & Spending During May

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Wednesday’s economic report schedule was a bit on the light side, but there are still plenty of economic and international market events driving the cart.

The Bureau of Economic Analysis reported that Personal Income and Personal Outlays (spending) were both positive in the month of May.

Personal Income increased $37.1 billion, or 0.2 percent, and Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) rose by some $53.5 billion, or a gain of 0.4 percent. Bloomberg had the consensus estimates at 0.3% in personal income and 0.4% in spending.

Disposable personal income increased by $33.9 billion, for a 0.2 percent gain in the month of May.

These numbers will sound decent on the surface, but the gains on a net basis were just under expectations and were less than the gains seen in the month of April. In April, personal income increased $75.4 billion (0.5%), disposable personal income increased $68.6 billion (0.5%), and consumer spending rose by $141.2 billion (1.1%).

If you consider the price indexes, the gain was 0.2% in May for both income and spending.

Then there is the year over year reading. The PCE price Index was up 0.9% on the headline and up 1.6% on the core PCE Price index.

What matters here is that this is just not exactly all that robust. Even with a one-month look-back at this point, it coincides with other broader weakness and slower gains in payrolls.