I stumbled on this image detailing how the average US consumer spends their paycheck based on a survey done by the Department of Labor. (click to enlarge)
There were a few areas here that I found interesting such as reading, cash contributions, entertainment and food.
The reading section is pretty minimal but its actually larger than I would expect. With the amount of materials readily available for free online or at the library, and the amount of book swap programs out there, I wouldn’t expect anyone to spend any money on books anymore. I know I don’t. But I guess some people are old fashioned 😉
The cash contributions section to me seems a bit low. I donate 10% of my income every year but I guess on an average, some people may donate nothing and lower the average number.
The entertainment section looks pretty generous to me. Our family probably spends at most a fraction of that a year (maybe $500), and that is if that includes traveling. We don’t go out to the movies and haven’t for several years as the cost is just ridiculous and most of the things we do for fun are cheap or free.
Now the food section on the other hand is something we splurge a bit more on but to get the amount shown here, one would spend about $500 a month on food (dining out and home cooking) and we definitely don’t spend that much.
Overall, this was pretty interesting to see. Mint.com offers something similar based on all the people that use Mint.com, one can see where the average spending is for local broadening out to nation wide in all sorts of categories. Wesabe.com also offers something similar. Anyway, this makes me feel pretty good about our spending habits 😉
Where on the chart do you sit? Do you spend more or less in the different areas shown on the chart? br>
Tags: all sorts, book swap, cash contributions, consumer spending, department of labor, entertainment section, food section, fraction, home cooking, mint, money, paycheck, reading section, spending habits, splurge