MarketWatch First Take
Consumers fail to carry their weight6/29/12 1:44 PM ET (MarketWatch)
NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- American consumers are apparently falling down on our main job: spending.
According to data released on Friday, consumer spending was flat in May, and March and April was revised downward, putting a bleaker than anticipated pall on the second quarter. Incomes inched higher (0.2%) and people were saving more, 3.9% of their income vs. 3.7% a month earlier. However, a year ago it was 5%. Read more about consumer spending.
Every time we parse data on the moods, whims and fancies of consumers, we're always reminded that consumer spending is a key driver of the economy, accounting for roughly two-thirds of U.S. growth. In order to keep everything clicking along it's vital that we all spend, spend, spend.
Is that really a good thing? Wasn't unrestrained spending, easy credit, reckless mortgages, and short-term thinking a big contributor to what got us here in the first place?
It seems as if the economic gloom will never lift.
Companies in industries ranging from food (
Oh well, at least gas is a little cheaper.
Dear economy: Don't put so much pressure on us. Surely there's got to be another way to drive growth rather than leaning on already hard-pressed consumers to prop it up.
-- , commentary editor