Millennials Gain Share of Consumer Spending Age and Size of Household by Generation
As Baby Boomers continue to age out of prime furniture buying years, Generation X households have held strong in their power as key contributors to consumer spending – despite a much smaller population size. A more affluent Generation X population paired with the sheer size of Millennials, now fully in adulthood, points to a bright future for the furniture and home furnishings industry. In 2017, Millennials accounted for 71.9 million people and are expected to surpass Baby Boomers size of 73.5 million next year.
This is the final factoid in a series of four factoids, using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ 2017 Consumer Expenditure Survey to show the shift over the last four years in consumer spending among the five adult generations as Millennials continue to gain a greater share.
With the highest income and an average age of 44.3, Gen Xers are the industry’s prime consumers. Now an average age of 60.2, many Baby Boomers have retired or are preparing to retire, while the average Millennial is yet to reach 30 with many earning years ahead. In fact, Millennials have now surpassed Gen Xers in the number of individuals in the U.S. workforce.
Generation X represents the bulk of families with children. In 2017, they had an average of 3.1 people per household, slightly down from the 3.2 of the three previous years but still well above the 2.5 for all consumer units. Millennials are starting to have children at a higher pace – bumping up the average size of a Millennial household to 2.6. Baby Boomers still have an average of 2.2 persons per household, possibly reflecting leftover Millennials still at home for younger Boomers.