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As described in an earlier post, we are using credit and debit card spending data provided by Opportunity Insights to track sales tax trends in California. To do this, we use an index—a weighted average of different spending categories—designed to track movements in California’s sales tax base. In this post, we update the index to include September data.

Card Data: Growth Continued in September... In September 2020, the spending index grew for the fifth month in a row, increasing by 3.8 percent from August to September (seasonally adjusted).

…But Spending Remained Somewhat Below January. Although spending has been growing steadily, it still has not quite recovered to pre-pandemic levels. In September, spending was 2.6 percent below its January level (seasonally adjusted).


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