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Consumer Expenditure Surveys

Beyond the Numbers Using CE Data

Beyond the Numbers discuss specific data trends or methodolgical issues. From 2010 to 2012, this publication was called Focus on Prices and Spending, and before 2010 this publication did not have a specific title.


  • How have healthcare expenditures changed? Evidence from the Consumer Expenditure Surveys (HTML) (PDF), November 2020
  • Receipt and use of stimulus payments in the time of the Covid-19 pandemic (HTML) (PDF), August 2020


  • How does consumer spending differ among households in California, Texas, and New York? A new BLS data product can tell us (HTML) (PDF), September 2019
  • Are most Americans cutting the cord on landlines? (HTML) (PDF), May 2019
  • The relationship between cash contributions, pretax income, and age (HTML) (PDF), February 2019


  • Tradeoffs in the expenditure patterns of families with children (HTML) (PDF), July 2018
  • Housing and expenditures: before, during, and after the bubble (HTML) (PDF), June 2018
  • Consumer spending by state: BLS puts New Jersey to the test (HTML) (PDF), March 2018


  • Hispanic household spending in 2015 (HTML) (PDF), July 2017
  • Use with caution: interpreting Consumer Expenditure income group data (HTML) (PDF), May 2017
  • How do United States consumer expenditures compare with the United Kingdom and Japan? (HTML) (PDF), February 2017
  • Spending habits of urban consumers and "blue-collar" consumers living in urban areas, 1984 and 2015 (HTML) (PDF), January 2017


  • What the Consumer Expenditure Survey tells us about mortgage instruments before and after the housing collapse (HTML) (PDF), October 2016
  • Household healthcare spending in 2014 (HTML) (PDF), August 2016
  • Eating and drinking in Miami: consumer expenditures, 2010-14 (HTML) (PDF), August 2016
  • Using gasoline data to explain inelasticity (HTML) (PDF), March 2016
  • A closer look at spending patterns of older Americans (HTML) (PDF), March 2016
  • Expenditures on cellular phone services have increased significantly since 2007 (HTML) (PDF), February 2016


  • Consumer expenditures vary by age (HTML) (PDF), December 2015
  • Movies, music, and sports: U.S. entertainment spending, 2008-2013 (HTML) (PDF), March 2015


  • Income and spending patterns among Black households (HTML) (PDF), November 2014
  • Do different groups invest differently in higher education? (HTML) (PDF), June 2014
  • Americans' aging autos (HTML) (PDF), May 2014
  • New education classification better reflects income and spending patterns in the Consumer Expenditure Survey (HTML) (PDF), January 2014


  • Spending Patterns of Families Receiving Means-tested Government Assistance (HTML) (PDF), December 2013
  • Spending on pets: "Tails" from the Consumer Expenditure Survey (HTML) (PDF), May 2013
  • Expenditures of urban and rural households in 2011 (HTML) (PDF), February 2013


  • Travel expenditures, 2005-2011: spending slows during recent recession (HTML) (PDF), December 2012
  • A comparison of 25 years of consumer expenditures by homeowners and renters (HTML) (PDF), October 2012
  • How parents use time and money (HTML) (PDF), August 2012


  • How do U.S. expenditures compare with those of other countries? (PDF), Fourth Quarter 2011
  • Consumer Spending in 2010 (PDF), Third Quarter 2011
  • Part D Prescription Drug Coverage and Health Care Spending by Seniors on Medicare (PDF), Second Quarter 2011
  • Do two live as cheaply as one? Evidence from the Consumer Expenditure Survey (PDF), First Quarter 2011


  • How Consumers Used the 2009 Economic Recovery Payments of $250 (PDF), Fourth Quarter 2010
  • Household Energy Spending: Two Surveys Compared (PDF), Third Quarter 2010
  • Health Care Spending: 1998, 2003, and 2008 (PDF), Second Quarter 2010
  • More than 75 percent of American households own computers (PDF), First Quarter 2010
  • The Consumer Expenditure Survey-30 Years as a Continuous Survey, January 2010



Last Modified Date: February 19, 2021