U.S. families boosted their spending in September, while their income barely increased, the Commerce Department reported on Friday.
The figures are evidence American households tapped more savings to cope with mounting inflationary pressure.
Real personal consumption expenditures (PCE), consumption after adjusting for inflation, gained 0.6 percent, three times the pace in August, advanced by consumption on durable goods including autos as well as nondurable goods including food, according to the report.
U.S. Labor Department figures showed consumer prices in the nation rose 0.3 percent in September, led by energy and food price gains. In the past 12 months, the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which tracks inflation at the retail level, rose by 3.9 percent before seasonal adjustment.
Personal income edged up 0.1 percent in September, after posting a 0.1 percent decrease in August, the Commerce Department said.
The U.S. savings rate, personal saving as a percentage of disposable personal income, dropped sharply to 3.6 percent in September from 4.5 percent in August, the lowest level since December 2007 when the economic recession kicked in.