January spending increases but income growth slows - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

January spending increases but income growth slows

WASHINGTON. - Personal spending jumped by a larger amount than expected in January but Americans' incomes barely budged. The weak income growth could depress spending in the months ahead, acting as a further drag on the fragile economic recovery.
     
The Commerce Department said that personal spending rose by 0.5 percent in January, slightly better than expected. But incomes edged up only 0.1 percent, significantly lower than the 0.4 percent gain that economists had expected.
     
The income gain was the weakest showing in four months and raised more concerns about whether consumers will be able to keep spending at a sufficiently strong pace to support an economic rebound.

Economy grows at 5.7 percent pace

(January 29, 2010)

The economy grew for a second straight quarter from October through December, posting a 5.7 percent annual rate, the fastest pace since the third quarter of 2003.
     
The Commerce Department report is the strongest evidence to date that the worst recession since the 1930s ended last year, though an academic panel that dates recessions has yet to officially declare an end to it.
     
The two straight quarters of growth last year followed a record four quarters of economic decline. Still, the growth at the end of last year was primarily fueled by companies refilling depleted stockpiles, a trend that will soon fade.
     
The report also provides an upbeat end to an otherwise dismal year, the nation's economy declined 2.4 percent in 2009, the largest drop since 1946.

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