Average household spending rose 0.1 percent in real terms in August from a year earlier to 299,479 yen for the third consecutive monthly increase, the government said Friday.

The increase, which follows a 1.3 percent gain in July, compares with a real 0.3 percent drop in spending by wage-earning households alone, the Ministry of Public Management, Home Affairs, Posts and Telecommunications said.

“Household spending is broadly flat,” a ministry official said.

Spending rose 15.3 percent on education and 1.7 percent on food, it said. Spending fell 4 percent on clothing and footwear, and 3.1 percent on transportation and communications.

Household spending accounts for about 60 percent of Japan’s gross domestic product and wage-earning households’ outlays make up 60 percent of total household spending.