AQUA BOOK 2014 II - Page 15

Spending Potential Index Consumer Spending Potential Index Comparisons ESRI integrates the household spending data into a comprehensive database of consumer expenditures. Data are then reported by product or service category in terms of a Spending Potential Index (SPI). The SPI compares the average expenditure for a specific product or service within a region like the Coastal Bend to the average amount spent nationally. An index of 100 is the U.S. average. As a reference, an SPI of 130 suggests that the average spending by local consumers is 30 percent above the national average. Review of South Texas Business Conditions CONSUMER MARK ET In pure dollar terms, consumers in Corpus Christi and the Coastal Bend spend about 15 percent less than the state or national average. One key factor that affects the amount of consumer Source: ESRI Business Analyst Online. spending is disposable, or after-tax, income. Households in the Corpus Christi metro area for local residents going to fast-food restaurants more than 14 earn on average 14 percent less than the U.S. households do, times per month is 105, and the readings for some popular fastand households in the Coastal Bend as a whole earn 18 percent food chains other than Whataburger are as high as 160. With an less. Because the SPI is not adjusted for this income gap, the SPI SPI at 180, Whataburger is, of course, a hometown favorite. should be interpreted relative to local consumers’ purchasing power if the objective is to gauge their spending behavior relative Either with or without the consideration of differences in to that outside the region. For instance, the SPI’s for food and income, it is clear that consumers in the Coastal Bend spend entertainment among regional consumers are on a par with their substantially less on apparel, particularly footwear, perhaps due incomes, which are 80–85% of the national average. In other to the warm climate of South Texas. Households outside the words, while the typical local consumer is spending less on food metro area also tend to spend less on financial services, such and entertainment than the U.S. average in dollar terms, she as banking, and travel. Those rural households are less likely to is allocating about the same amounts of her income to those subscribe to banking services, or to own stocks and mutual funds. expenses as the average U.S. consumer does. On the other hand, Coastal Bend households, particularly in the metro area, are more likely to have an auto loan and other types Within the food category, the SPI is particularly high for fastof loans, including a home mortgage. food outlets, full-service restaurants and steakhouses. The index 13 llllllllllll llllllllllll