Market Overview

Friday's Market Minute: The U.S. Consumer Isn't Spending


The backbone of the American economy is the U.S. consumer, and as economic data begins to roll in, we are finally getting a hindsight look at how well the consumer has been doing. The second look at 1Q GDP came in lower than expected yesterday, at -5.0 percent, with U.S. consumer spending falling 6.8 percent. This morning's Personal Income and Outlays report showed April U.S. consumer spending fell even further--13.6 percent. Although some parts of the country are reopening now in May, bringing back business and the chance for consumers to spend, was April actually the worst of it? Unemployment has risen by the millions every single week, and although the numbers are slowing, a staggering number of people are still making new claims every week. Essential-goods giant Costco (NASDAQ: COST) missed on earnings yesterday despite a significant jump in e-commerce and same-store sales. It comes down to how much money the average U.S. consumer has, is willing to spend, and what they'll spend it on, and if massive grocery chains are seeing less revenue than they expected, that casts a pall over large and discretionary purchases for a long time to come. And if the consumer isn't spending, that'll loop back into GDP, and the cycle may continue.

Get expert insights from market participants and seasoned traders as America reopens at TD Ameritrade Network's Town Hall this Saturday, May 30th starting at 10 a.m. ET. Tune in to to watch.


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