This interactive chart in the NYT uses shapes to represent how much the average American spends in different categories. Larger shapes make up a larger part of spending; colors show changes in prices from March 2007 to March 2008. Red means an increase in the relative cost, light tan and white relative stability, and blue a decrease.

Note from Gwen: Since it was causing some people with Firefox problems, I’m changing it so you have to click to see it, rather than having it come up automatically when you visit the site. Hope this helps.

[kml_flashembed movie="" width="970" height="550" wmode="transparent" /]