Consumer spending picked up in August, a sign the U.S. economic recovery is gaining steam heading into the fall.
Personal outlays on goods and services rose 0.8% in August from the month before, after a 0.1% decrease in July, the Commerce Department reported Friday.
Personal income increased 0.2% in August, reflecting wage gains and the federal government’s distribution of child tax credits. Those were partly offset by declines in unemployment insurance as many states ended pandemic-related supplemental payments, the Commerce Department report noted.
The highly contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus triggered a summer slowdown in spending on meals out, hotels and airline tickets. Still, consumers remain in a strong position to help power the economic recovery. They have accumulated high levels of savings and are benefiting from an abundance of job openings and rising wages.