by Donna Martinez
Former Senior Writer and Editor, John Locke Foundation
Interesting piece in The Atlantic that contends it’s so easy to shop, and stuff is so inexpensive, that we’re becoming a nation of hoarders.
In 2017, Americans spent $240 billion—twice as much as they’d spent in 2002—on goods like jewelry, watches, books, luggage, and telephones and related communication equipment, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, which adjusted those numbers for inflation. Over that time, the population grew just 13 percent. Spending on personal care products also doubled over that time period. Americans spent, on average, $971.87 on clothes last year, buying nearly 66 garments, according to the American Apparel and Footwear Association. That’s 20 percent more money than they spent in 2000. The average American bought 7.4 pairs of shoes last year, up from 6.6 pairs in 2000.
I call this a big win for consumers, thanks to free markets and competition that continue to deliver more choices and an improving quality of life.