Consumer spending in January fell for the second straight month for the first time since early 2009, as Americans paid less for gasoline and increased their savings. Consumer spending dropped a seasonally adjusted 0.2% last month, the Commerce Department said Monday. Personal income rose 0.3% last month. Economists polled by MarketWatch had forecast a seasonally adjusted 0.1% decrease in spending and a 0.4% gain in income. Since incomes grew faster than spending, the amount of money individuals save climbed to 5.5% from 5% in December. Also, inflation as gauged by the PCE price index decreased 0.5% in January. The PCE index has risen a scant 0.2% in the past 12 months. THe core PCE index that excludes food and energy, meanwhile, rose 0.1%, and it's up 1.3% over the past year.
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