The more Americans are willing to spend on tchotchkes—gift shop items, home decor trinkets, yard sale finds—the greater the economic confidence. Five years ago Demo Memo Blog created the Tchotchke Index to track excess consumer spending (here is the original post). The Tchotchke Index is the amount of money spent by the average household on "decorative items for the home," a detailed category in the Consumer Expenditure Survey.
Sadly, the Tchotchke Index has plummeted to the lowest level on record.
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