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Statement from U.S. Commerce Department Chief Economist Mark Doms on Personal Income and Outlays in May 2011

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, June 27, 2011
CONTACT OFFICE OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS
202-482-2235

The U.S. Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis today released data on personal income and outlays for May 2011.  Personal income rose 0.3 percent in May, slightly below private-sector forecasts of a 0.4-percent increase. Wages and salaries, the largest component of income, rose 0.2 percent, supported by a gain in hourly earnings.  Real consumer spending declined 0.1 percent, compared to private-sector expectations of a 0.1-percent increase, pulled down by a drop in motor vehicle purchases partly attributable to supply disruptions from the tsunami in Japan.

“Today’s personal income data show continued economic growth midway through the second quarter,” U.S. Commerce Department Chief Economist Mark Doms said. “American consumers have benefited from the two percentage point payroll tax cut President Obama instituted in 2010, which has increased the income of the average American household by $245 so far this year. Coupled with falling gasoline prices and job gains, private-sector forecasters anticipate increases in personal income and spending over the remainder of 2011.”