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Insightful Consumer Spending Statistics for 2023

Insightful Consumer Spending Statistics for 2023

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An essential indicator of market demand, balanced consumer spending is a vital sign of a healthy economy. In this overview of the latest consumer spending statistics, we’ll examine how much money US consumers have and how they are spending it. We’ll also explore what Americans are buying and discuss recent consumer trends. Finally, we’ll examine global spending data and answer some frequently asked questions about consumer spending.

Top 10 Consumer Spending Statistics and Facts for 2023

  • In Q2 of 2022, US consumer spending reached $17.02 trillion.

  • Consumer spending equaled 68.4% of the US GDP in Q2 of 2022.

  • In 2021, Americans spent an average of $66,928 per consumer.

  • The total US consumer buying power in 2020 was $17.5 trillion.

  • Housing accounted for 33.8% of all consumer spending in 2021.

  • An average American spent $8,289 on food in 2021.

  • US consumers spent $3,568 per person on entertainment in 2021.

  • Worldwide consumer spending in 2020 totaled $46.96 trillion.

  • In Q2 of 2022, consumer spending in the UK was $413.3 billion.

  • Consumer spending in China totaled $8.12 trillion in 2020.

General US Consumer Spending Statistics

In Q2 of 2022, US consumer spending reached $17.02 trillion.

Compared to the year’s first quarter, consumer spending was up by 2.1% from $16.67 trillion. It was also 8.5% up year-over-year from $15.68 trillion in 2021’s second quarter. Exactly two years after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the consumer spending figures suggest the economy has largely recovered. At the height of the pandemic in Q2 of 2020, the number hit a multi-year low of $12.99 trillion. Since then, consumer spending has increased by 31%.

(US Bureau of Economic Analysis)

In July 2022, the annual consumer spending stood at $17.4 trillion.

Looking at US consumer spending by month, it has been steadily growing since 2020. In April that year, the annual spending hit $12.08 trillion. Over the subsequent 27 months, the number has increased by 44%. Many see this as a clear indicator of a recovering economy and the direct result of a higher average personal income. However, economists also attributed this growth to the rising prices of goods and services and increased living costs.

(US Bureau of Economic Analysis, US Bureau of Economic Analysis)

Consumer spending equaled 68.4% of the US GDP in Q2 of 2022.

According to US consumer spending data, this marked a slight increase from 68% at the end of the previous quarter. Throughout history, the level of spending has been fairly consistent relative to the country’s GDP. Since 1947, when this data was first compiled, the lowest spending level was recorded in Q1 of 1952 — 57.7% of the national GDP. On the other hand, the highest level (68.8%) was measured in Q4 of 2011, immediately after the global financial crisis.

(CEIC Data)

In 2021, Americans spent an average of $66,928 per consumer.

This marked a 9.1% increase from $61,332 in 2020, American spending stats show. The spending was also up by 6.2% from $63,036 in pre-pandemic 2019. With people’s everyday lives returning to normal and restaurants and other public venues reopening their doors, this growth doesn’t come as a surprise. However, the average income only saw a 3.7% increase between 2020 and 2021, suggesting that people may be spending beyond their means.

(US Bureau of Labor Statistics)

The highest earners have increased their spending by 20% in 2022.

Between July 2021 and July 2022, affluent Americans have significantly increased their spending. Looking at consumer spending by income level, those making $100,000 a year or more are now spending 20% more, and those earning $50,000–$99,999 are spending 8% more. Meanwhile, America’s lowest earners are feeling the brunt of rising inflation. According to the latest data, those making less than $50,000 a year have cut their spending by 1% in 2022.


The total US consumer purchasing power in 2020 was $17.5 trillion.

Between 2010 and 2020, the total buying power had increased by 54.9% from $11.3 trillion at the beginning of this period. And while most purchasing power is in the hands of white consumers, the data on spending power by race reveals all minorities saw a significant increase in their buying power during this decade. Namely, Asian Americans’ purchasing power went up by 111%, Hispanics’ by 87%, Native Americans’ by 67%, and African Americans’ by 66%.

(UGA Today)

Experts predict a drop in consumer spending between 2022 and 2026.

The reopening of stores, restaurants, and other venues led to an increase in consumer spending in 2021 and 2022. However, economists predict a new decrease starting in Q4 of 2022. While spending on services pushed the overall number up, the sales of vehicles and recreational goods — which saw a post-pandemic boost — will drop by 5.1% in 2022. Similarly, people will no longer stockpile goods, leading to a 0.4% drop in spending on nondurables.


US Consumer Spending by Category

Housing accounted for 33.8% of all consumer spending in 2021.

Although this marked a drop from 34.9% in 2020, housing still made up more than a third of total annual consumer spending. In fact, the average per-person spending on housing has increased by 5.6% — from $21,417 in 2020 to $22,624 in 2021. The spending on rental housing was up by 6.3% year-over-year, while the expenditures associated with owned dwellings were up by 1.6%. Additionally, the 89.9% spike in out-of-town trips resulted in a 36.1% higher spend on lodging.

(US Bureau of Labor Statistics)

An average American spent $8,289 on food in 2021.

United States consumption statistics show that an average US consumer spent $690.75 per month on food. The total spending on food was up from $7,310 in 2020 and accounted for 12.4% of an average consumer’s annual expenditures. Broken into categories, Americans spent $5,259 on in-house meals and another $3,030 on takeout and dining out. On top of that, an average American spent $554 (0.8% of total annual spend) on alcoholic beverages in 2021.

(US Bureau of Labor Statistics)

US consumers spent $3,568 per person on entertainment in 2021.

In 2021, the spending on entertainment increased by 22.7% from $2,909 in 2020. American spending statistics reveal that the number was also 15.5% up from $3,090 in pre-pandemic 2019. The growth was primarily driven by expenditures on entertainment equipment and services (including streaming), which was up by 60.6% year-over-year — from $576 in 2020 to $925 in 2021. Fees and admissions were also up from $425 in 2020 to $654 in 2021.

(US Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Americans spend more than $18,000 a year on non-essentials.

According to consumer spending statistics from a 2019 US survey, Americans were spending nearly $18,000 a year — or $1,947 a month — on non-essential costs. On a monthly level, this included $209.38 for restaurant meals, another $177.88 for takeout and delivery, and $173.62 for lunches. Not much has changed since, judging by a 2021 survey, which found that 80% of Americans were planning to spend the same or more than last summer on non-essentials.

(USA Today, Shopkick)

Fashion and jewelry spending saw the biggest declines amid the pandemic.

A 2021 survey of the buying habits of American consumers found that they were planning to reduce their spending on jewelry and accessories by 35% each. While apparel, furniture, and out-of-home entertainment each saw a 32% decrease in planned spending, footwear expenditures were 31% down, and spending on electronics experienced a 30% decline. On the whole, 85% of US consumers said the global pandemic had impacted their shopping behavior.


Consumer Spending Trends

As of March 2022, in-store spending was up by 8% year-over-year.

This is higher than the 5% annual increase in March 2021 and indicates that customers are slowly returning to brick-and-mortar stores. Of course, online spending has experienced much more significant growth, driven primarily by lockdowns and potential health risks associated with physical shopping. As of March 2022, ecommerce spending experienced a 27% increase year-over-year and a 33% total increase since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020.

(McKinsey & Company)

46% of US consumers have recently switched brands.

Consumerism statistics show the number is significantly higher than in 2021 and 2020, when 43% and 33% of consumers said the same, respectively. This suggests that consumers are now more willing to shift their brand loyalties and try out new, more affordable products. Seeing as 90% of consumers have noticed price increases on their favorite products, this isn’t a surprise. In fact, 90% of those who have switched brands don’t plan to return to their old choices.

(McKinsey & Company)

Women are responsible for up to 80% of all purchasing decisions.

Looking at male vs. female spending, the statistics are strongly in favor of female consumers. For one, women indirectly or directly drive anywhere from 70% to 80% of all spending decisions. Furthermore, a staggering 94% of women aged 15–35 spend at least an hour a day shopping online. Finally, single women make up 18% of all homebuyers in the US, putting them in second place behind married couples and well ahead of single men, who make up just 9% of all buyers.


The pandemic has made 52% of consumers more aware of sustainability.

Recent consumer spending trends point to the increased role of sustainability in people’s purchasing decisions. On that note, a 2021 survey found that 65% of global consumers try to buy products that are packaged more sustainably. Asked about what prevents them from buying greener alternatives to their favorite products, 53% of consumers cite their high prices, 31% claim other options are less functional, and 41% say it’s hard to find 100% eco-friendly products.

(Sustainability Magazine)

US consumers are increasingly dipping into their savings.

According to the United States consumer spending statistics from April 2022, the spending was up by 0.7% from the previous month — but the incomes were only 0.4%. May 2022 saw another 0.9% month-over-month spending increase, suggesting that Americans are dipping into their savings to maintain their lifestyles. It is thus no surprise that the personal savings rate in the US currently sits at 5%, far below the 8.3% recorded just before the pandemic in February 2020.

(Marketplace, Fortune)

Global Consumer Spending Statistics

Worldwide consumer spending in 2020 totaled $46.96 trillion.

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, consumer spending was down across the globe. According to the latest available data, the number was 4.8% down from $49.32 trillion in 2019, interrupting a five-year upward streak. During the pandemic, Europe saw an 8% decrease in household spending, with Malta leading the losses at 22%. Other countries and regions experienced even steeper declines — the UK saw a 26% decrease, while China recorded a 17% drop in spending.

(MacroTrends, World Economic Forum)

In Q2 of 2022, consumer spending in the UK was $413.3 billion.

According to consumer spending stats, this number — £358.3 billion in local currency — was slightly lower than $413.6 billion (£358.5 billion) recorded in the year’s first quarter. Despite this small drop, consumer spending in the UK has been on the rise since 2021’s first quarter, when it hit $369.2 billion (£320 billion). Overall, consumer spending in the United Kingdom is almost back to its pre-pandemic level of $415.5 billion (£360.2 billion) recorded in Q4 of 2019.

(Trading Economics)

Consumer spending in China totaled $8.12 trillion in 2020.

This accounted for more than half of the country’s GDP ($15.92 trillion) and marked a 17% year-over-year drop. To help its economy recover, China has been offering its citizens incentives like expanded tax refunds and vouchers. And judging by the current consumer spending statistics, it seems to have worked. For example, sales of new electric cars grew by 111.2% between January and May 2022, while in June, retail sales were 3.1% up from a year ago.

(CME Group)

Consumer Spending Statistics FAQ

What are the 3 categories of consumer spending?
What is the current rate of consumer spending?
How much do consumers spend each year?
What are consumers buying right now?

US Consumer Spending Statistics: The Takeaway

Following the global pandemic and the resulting economic crisis, US consumer spending has largely rebounded and continued its growth. The latest consumer spending statistics put its annual value at $17.4 trillion — up by 44% from $12.08 trillion in April 2020.

While this suggests that the American economy is recovering, experts point out a few reasons for concern. For one, the prices of goods, services, and housing are continuously rising. Also, the monthly spending growth exceeds the income growth, indicating that Americans are tapping into their savings and spending above their means. For these and other reasons discussed in the article, economists predict a drop in consumer spending between 2022 and 2026.


Radovan Sekulic
Radovan Sekulic
Radovan is a journalism graduate with years of experience as a writer and editor. He loves dabbling in numbers and percentages, interpreting data, and trying to make sense of seemingly complex information and turning this into digestible articles. He is also a pop culture aficionado with boomer taste, and if he's not watching movies or reading on current events, he's probably busy getting cat hair off his furniture.