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Report: Personal Income Shows No Progress Since April 2020

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EDITOR NOTE: There’s a big difference between income going up because of three rounds of government stimulus in the last year and real, sustainable progress in income growth. Mish Talk cites stats from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) Personal Income and Outlays report for August that show real income has remained flat throughout the pandemic and, when you factor in inflation, real disposable personal income is actually on the decline. 

Three rounds of fiscal stimulus have kept income elevated but the impact is wearing off.

Last Friday, the BEA released its Personal Income and Outlays report for August.

Nominal Stats

  • Personal Income: +0.2% from July
  • Disposable Personal Income: +0.1% since July
  • Spending rose 0.8% following a 0.1% decline in July.

Inflation Adjusted Stats

  • Real Disposable Personal Income: -0.3% since July
  • Real Spending rose 0.4% following a 0.5% decline in July.

Income Flatlines

Three rounds of fiscal stimulus, easily visible in the top line of the chart have kept personal income intact throughout the entire pandemic. 

Personal Current Transfer Receipts (PCTR) remains elevated since April of 2020. 

PCTR includes food stamps, three rounds of Covid stimulus, federal pandemic unemployment benefits and other social handouts. 

Real (inflation adjusted) income and real spending are well below the nominal numbers as inflation takes a toll. 

Originally Posted on Mish Talk

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