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News : US Economy Last Updated: Mar 29, 2011 - 6:10 AM

US consumer spending accelerated in February; Big part of increase went to cover higher gas prices
By Finfacts Team
Mar 28, 2011 - 1:51 PM

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US consumer spending accelerated in February, rising more than expected, following a month which was saw extreme weather in some regions. However, a big part of the increase went to cover higher gas prices.

Consumer spending is accounts for about 70% of the demand factor in gross domestic product.

Economists who had been surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires had estimated spending would rise by 0.6% and incomes by 0.4% in February.

The Bureau of Economic Analysis reported the following Real Disposable Personal Income and Real Consumer Spending:

Personal income increased 0.3% in February after increasing 1.2% in January. Wages and salaries, the largest component of personal income, increased 0.3% in February, after the same increase in January.

Current-dollar disposable personal income (DPI) rose 0.3% in February after rising 0.8% in January; a reduction to the employee social security contribution rate and the expiration of a Making Work Pay tax credit boosted DPI in January.

Real DPI, income adjusted for inflation and taxes, decreased 0.1% in February after increasing 0.5% in January.

Real consumer spending, spending adjusted for price changes, rose 0.3% in February following no change in January.

PCE prices increased 0.4% in January after increasing 0.3% in January. Excluding food and energy, the PCE (personal consumption expenditure) price index increased 0.2% in February after the same increase in January.

Personal saving rate

Personal saving as a percentage of DPI was 5.8% in February, compared with 6.1% in January

Breaking down the economic data, with Scott Nations, NationsShares; CNBC's Steve Liesman and, Rick Santelli:

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