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How Much Are Americans Spending on Alcohol? — Dollars and Sense

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Getty Images

There are many reasons why the idea behind prohibition not only failed miserably in this country, but has been long since buried deep in the American archives alongside slavery and the powdered wig.

Americans love booze — so much that no matter what type of economic ugliness has transpired over the course of the last 30 years, the American people have managed to consistently spend an average of $1 out of every $100 on alcohol.

In fact, the only significant change in the way we spend our alcoholic allotment is where we spend it. With fewer people drinking at home, more social boozers throwing cash around at bars and restaurants than every before.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, back in 1982, Americans only spent about 24 percent of their booze budgets at bars and restaurants, whereas today that figure is in upwards of 40 percent or more.

However, that does not necessarily mean people are going out more frequently than in times past.

Actually the increase has more to do with the cost of alcohol in stores going down, and the price of alcohol in bars and restaurants going up — nearly 79 percent more than the average cost in 1982.

Statistics also show that when Americans enjoy a drink at home, they prefer beer, and that hasn’t changed much since 1982. However, over the last three decades consumers have more than doubled what they spend on wine, and cut back to spending nearly three times less what they used to spend on liquor.

Nevertheless, regardless of the particular economic strains involved in chasing the great American booze buzz, one thing is certain — the people will always find a way to support it.



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