NEW YORK-With home prices rising and initial unemployment claims trending down, the Deloitte Consumer Spending Index rose to 4.3 in June from its 4.2 reading in May.
Real new home prices were up 9.2 percent from June of last year to $113,833, and initial unemployment claims were down almost 7 percent from May 2012 to May 2013. Hourly real wages, at $8.81, were relatively flat. The tax rate was up from last year and now stands at 12 percent.
Daniel Bachman, Deloitte’s senior U.S. economist, noted that both housing and employment “have regained their footing since last year. Consumers appear to have adjusted to the effects of higher tax rates and the sequester, which has also helped to sustain household spending.”
That being said, “shoppers still expect a good deal,” said Alison Paul, Deloitte vice chairman and retail and distribution sector leader. “Retailers can use attractive offers, one-of-a-kind events for children and teens, and promotions to help encourage parents to shop their brands this back-to-school season.”