Monday, January 30, 2012
Americans' income rose .5% in December, the highest gain in nine months.
However, consumer spending remained the same as in November, as people saved their extra income.
Economists noted that income rose last month largely because of strong hiring. The economy added 200,000 jobs in December. More jobs mean more income available to spend.
The best hope for the economy is further job gains. On Friday, the government is expected to report another solid month of hiring for January.
Income rose 0.5 percent from November to December, the Commerce Department said Monday. It was the sharpest increase since a similar gain in March.
In December, Americans boosted their savings. If they continue to save any additional income rather than spend it, the economy could slow. And that could force employers to pull back on hiring.
Read more from The Associated Press.