U.S. private consumption expenditures, GDP and employment

U.S. private consumption expenditures accounted for 68.5 percent of its GDP in 2021 and were the main source of growth (expanding 7.9 percent in real terms).

This result occurred after the devastating effects caused by the pandemic in 2020, which resulted in a real contraction of 3.8 percent.

Durable goods exhibited particularly strong growth, with a rate of 18 percent.

For its part, according to information from the World Trade Organization (WTO), consumer spending contributed 5.27 percentage points to GDP growth (5.7 percent) in 2021, evenly distributed between goods (about 2.69 percentage points) and services (about 2.58 percentage points).

Non-durable goods consumption contributed 1.39 percentage points to annual GDP growth, while durable goods consumption contributed 1.31 percentage points.

Private consumption

Household consumption expenditures (on health care services, housing services, and utilities, among others) contributed 2.92 percentage points to GDP growth.

The main categories of consumption expenditures in 2021 were as follows: food and beverage preparation services and temporary lodging (0.88 percentage points), health care (0.79 percentage points), other nondurable goods (0.48 percentage points), clothing and footwear (0.45 percentage points), recreational items (0.43 percentage points), automobiles and parts (0.37 percentage points), recreational services (0.33 percentage points), and household fixtures and equipment (0.27 percentage points).

After a period of stable economic growth in 2018 and 2019, in which U.S. real GDP increased 2.9% and 2.3% in each respective year, the U.S. economy, like the global economy, went into recession, as it was significantly impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Real GDP contracted 3.4% in 2020 after 11 consecutive years of expansion.

The economy experienced a rapid rebound in 2021, thanks to relief measures taken by the government and easing monetary conditions, which lifted the real GDP growth rate to 5.7% in 2021.

Going forward, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) forecasts real GDP growth of 3.7% in 2022 and 2.4% in 2023, driven by strong private consumption and a recovery in gross fixed capital formation (expected to increase by 3.8% and 3.6% in 2022 and 2023, respectively).

Net exports are expected to make a negative contribution to GDP growth.


Redacción Opportimes