Last updated: August 4, 2010 - 8:43am
Americans are spending more on electronics like iPads and flat-screen televisions and less on durable goods like furniture, washing machines and lawn mowers, according to government data. The shift reflects a change in priorities for American consumers. After pouring money into all aspects of their homes during the previous decade, consumers are redirecting their purchases to eye-grabbing technology and socking away more of what's left over into savings. Apparel company executives are worried the lure of electronics will eat into their sales as the back-to-school season gets under way.
Outlays for televisions, computers, video and telephone equipment grew 1.8% in the first six months of this year, compared to the first half of pre-recession 2007, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. By comparison, spending on appliances decreased 3.6% during the same period, and spending on furniture decreased 11% during that time. Overall, consumer spending stayed flat in June from the previous month, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. Meanwhile, the U.S. savings rate ticked up to 6.4% in June from the previous month, its highest point in a year and far above its pre-recession level.
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