For the last 50 years, the consumer, that means you and me, have been the most powerful force driving the U.S. economy.Household spending now accounts for almost 70% of economic growth, about 10% more than it did in 1971. Household spending in the U.S. is also approximately 10-15% higher than most other developed nations.
Currently, U.S. economic growth is anemic and still suffering from the after-shocks of the financial crisis. Importantly, much of that weakness is the result of growing stress on consumers.
Using the compelling graph below and the data behind it, we can illustrate why the U.S. economy and consumers are struggling.