How Americans Are Spending on Consumer Goods

May 23, 2014

This article is included in these additional categories:

CPG & FMCG | Financial Services | Food & Restaurants | Media & Entertainment | Technology | Travel & Hospitality

Mintel-Fast-Growing-Consumer-Spending-Categories-May2014Personal consumption expenditures on consumer goods surpassed $10 trillion in the US last year for the first time, estimates Mintel in nearly-released data, and is forecast to exceed $12 billion by 2018. Beyond essentials such as housing ($2.1 trillion) and transportation ($1.2 trillion), Americans are also spending significant amounts on tech and communications, and are forecast to considerably increase their spending on non-essentials such as travel and entertainment.

Those increases will be partly due to Americans becoming more “spend-centered,” according to the researchers, but also will be the result of a huge number of relatively well-to-do Baby Boomers reaching retirement and spending on non-essential items.

As such, the categories that Mintel expects to see the fastest growth in spending between 2013 and 2018 will be:

  • Leisure and entertainment (+28.5%);
  • Vacations and tourism (+27.3%);
  • Technology and communications (+25.2%); and
  • Alcohol on premises (+23.7%).

Each of those will outstrip the 20% growth in consumer goods spending overall.

The technology and communications category was the largest spending category outside of housing and transportation last year. Indeed, Americans spent almost $662 billion on this category, which includes popular consumer electronics products as well as pay-TV services, among others.

That was more than was spent on personal finance ($580 billion), food at home ($557.3 billion), dining out ($451.3 billion), home and garden ($413.5 billion), and leisure and entertainment ($335.8 billion).

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