"The country may be experiencing a rare decline in personal consumption, not just a slower rate of growth. Such a decline would be the first since 1991, and it would almost certainly push the entire economy into a recession in the middle of an election year".
Of course a downturn in spending on stuff like video games and designer bags is bad news for our consumer-oriented economy. But it's good news for individuals, if it means they are being more realistic about tradeoffs and living within their means. Interestingly, the authors choose to quote a 22 year old to that effect, maybe because of their reputation for profligacy.
"Jinal Shah, 22, a college senior in New York, said she wanted to buy the popular Nintendo Wii video game system as a gift for herself this holiday season, but had second thoughts because of the $250 price tag. She ended up not purchasing it.
“You have to make choices,” she said. “I get the Wii, or I go out more. I am just much more aware of the tradeoff now.”