Econintersect: The BEA (Bureau of Economic Analysis) reported Friday (March 18) that real spending on travel and tourism increased at an annual rate of 2.5% in the fourth quarter of 2010, following an increase of 8.6% (revised) in the third quarter. Real travel and tourism spending turned up in 2010, increasing 3.4% (that is, from the 2009 annual level to the 2010 annual level), after two consecutive years of decline.
Real tourism expenditures returned to 2005 levels in 2010.
Total Tourism-Related Spending. The U.S. production generated by tourism spending not only includes the goods and services that are purchased directly, but also the inputs used to produce these goods and services — indirect tourism-related spending. In the fourth quarter of 2010, total current-dollar tourism-related spending was $1.4 trillion and consisted of $802.8 billion (59%) of direct tourism spending — goods and services sold directly to visitors — and $558.2 billion (41%) of indirect tourism-related spending — goods and services used to produce what visitors buy.
Total Tourism-Related Employment. In the fourth quarter of 2010, total tourism-related employment was 7.7 million and consisted of 5.5 million (71%) direct tourism jobs — jobs where workers produce goods and services sold directly to visitors — and 2.2 million (29%) indirect tourism-related jobs — jobs where workers produce goods and services used to produce what visitors buy.
Direct tourism-related employment was unchanged in the fourth quarter of 2010, after increasing 0.6 percent (revised) in the third quarter. By comparison, overall U.S. employment increased 0.7% in the fourth quarter of 2010 after decreasing 0.2% in the third quarter. For the year 2010, direct tourism-related employment decreased 1.0% after decreasing 5.0% in 2009.