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Working Paper
Conspicuous Consumption: Vehicle Purchases by Non-Prime Consumers

Consumers with higher income often spend more on luxury goods. As a result, lower-income consumers who seek to increase their perceived income and social status may be motivated to purchase conspicuous luxury goods. Lower-income consumers may also desire to emulate the visible consumption displayed by their wealthier peers. Using a unique vehicle financing dataset, we find that consumers with lower credit scores value vehicle brand prestige more than average consumers. The stronger preferences for prestige lead non-prime consumers to purchase more expensive vehicles than they otherwise would ...
Working Papers , Paper 2107

Newsletter
Economy to Move Down the Road at a Solid Pace in 2014 and Accelerate Slightly in 2015

According to participants in the Chicago Fed?s annual Automotive Outlook Symposium, the nation?s economic growth is forecasted to be solid this year and to strengthen somewhat in 2015. Inflation is expected to increase in 2014 and remain flat in 2015. The unemployment rate is anticipated to move lower but remain near 6% through the end of 2015. Light vehicle sales are predicted to improve moderately in 2014 and 2015.
Chicago Fed Letter , Issue July

Newsletter
Economy to Roll Along at a Solid Pace in 2015 and Accelerate Slightly in 2016

According to participants in the Chicago Fed?s annual Automotive Outlook Symposium, the nation?s economic growth is forecasted to be near its long-term average this year and to strengthen somewhat in 2016. Inflation is expected to decrease in 2015 but rebound in 2016. The unemployment rate is anticipated to move lower through the end of 2016, reaching 5 percent by then. Light vehicle sales are predicted to improve moderately in 2015 and 2016.
Chicago Fed Letter

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