Personal income rose in November but the the increase was too small to notice and definitely too small to inflate Americans' pinched disposable incomes, according to data released Friday by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.
Personal income increased $8.5 billion, or 0.1 percent in November at the same time that disposable income fell by nearly 0.1 percent or $5.0 billion.
Consumers continued to struggle with high health care, food, gas and airline costs, economists noted. In fact, Friday's BEA data found that "personal consumption expenditures" jumped $13.1 billion, or 0.1 percent in November. It had jumped $11.3 billion or 0.1 percent in October.
November's personal income gain of 0.1 percent proved less robust than October’s, which jumped $47 billion or 0.4 percent. Disposable income for October, however, increased by 0.2 percent or $27.2 billion.
Earlier this week, The Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis released its 2012 forecast based upon survey results from hundreds of business owners across the Ninth District. Respondents suggested that they intend to raise wages and benefits next year. Minnesotans can expect about a 2 percent increase, Fed economists said.