November 30, 2020 — New Data Lacks Reassurance


In a holiday shortened week, little data was released, while the virus continued to grab the headlines.  New applications for jobless benefits rose to 778,000 last week, the second straight weekly increase since the summer. Household income was reported to have fallen 0.7 percent In October as federal aid programs expired. A measure of consumer confidence showed Americans have become worried about the upcoming months.  These changes might cause consumers to cut back on spending in the winter months, hampering economic recovery in the first quarter.  Consumer spending accounts for more than two-thirds of economic activity in the US. Many households have built up savings due to an inability to spend on services that have been shut down by the pandemic.  If the vaccine gets approved and rolled out, we can hope the consumer will make up for almost a year of lost experiences.