Average expenditures per consumer unit in 2012 were $51,442, an increase of 3.5 percent from 2011 levels, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. This surpassed the spending peak recorded in 2008, after which the effects of the recession led to a low of $48,109 in 2010. The 2012 calendar year increase in spending outpaced the 2.1-percent increase in prices for goods and services during the same period, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI-U). This contrasts with 2010-2011, when the increase in average expenditures mirrored the increase in prices. Read more here.