US consumer spending surges 0.9% in March

April 29, 2019 - 7:37 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumer spending surged 0.9% in March, the biggest gain in nearly a decade, as inflation pressures remain non-existent.

The Commerce Department said Monday that the March gain was the biggest monthly increase since August 2009. That's a marked improvement after three months of lackluster readings in this key segment of the economy. Consumer spending accounts for 70% of economic activity.

Incomes grew a 0.1% in March while inflation rose just 0.2% and has risen only 1.5% over the past 12 months, far below the Federal Reserve's 2% target for inflation.

The big jump in consumer spending is encouraging because it suggests that the overall economy had solid momentum going into the April-June quarter.

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