In 2004, real compensation of US employees rose 3.0% while real wages and salaries rose 2.5% per the National Income and Product Accounts Tables. At the same time, real personal consumption expenditures rose 3.9%.
And it looks as if 2005 is off again to the races, where consumption always wins and labor income always shows.
U.S. retail sales dipped 0.3 percent in January, as expected, as automobile sales fell sharply, but purchases outside the volatile car sector gained a healthy 0.6 percent, a government report showed on Tuesday.Thank Alan Greenspan and the Asian central banks for that housing bubble keeping the American consumer, and thus the US economy, afloat.
While the drop in overall sales was the weakest performance in the Commerce Department's retail sales measure since a matching 0.3 percent decline in August, the gain outside of autos surpassed Wall Street expectations for a 0.4 percent climb and marked the strongest monthly rise since October.