Consumer spending

Consumers to spend less in 2014, despite rising confidence in economy

Card SwipeRecent data from Discover showed that despite rising consumer confidence in the economy, Americans plan to spend less heading into 2014.

Discover’s U.S. Spending Monitor held steady in December, as consumer confidence in the U.S. economy rose to the highest level since July. The number of consumers who believe the economy is improving rose to 30 percent, a seven-percentage-point increase from November.

Consumers also reported increased confidence in their personal finances in December. The number of consumers who believe their finances are improving increased by two percentage points to reach 22 percent, with consumers ages 18 to 39 among the most optimistic.

More consumers, however—29 percent—reported that they expect to spend less in January than in December, up 13 percentage points from November. Most consumers planned to spend less on discretionary personal expenses and major personal purchases. Eleven percent of consumers plan to spend less on household expenses such as gas and groceries, and a majority plan to spend less on household improvements.

The Discover U.S. Spending Monitor, which was launched in May 2007, tracks consumer spending intentions and capacity based on interviews with a random sample of 8,200 American adults.

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