By Natalie DeCoste

With many restrictions lifted and businesses reopening, analysts are seeing more signs of economic recovery as total consumer spending continues to climb.

The CEO of Bank of America, Brian Moynihan, said Monday that total consumer spending is currently up 20% in comparison to 2019. The value is calculated based on transaction volumes on customers’ credit and debit cards and over the Zelle payment network.

“People got a lot of stimulus money and they’ve been spending it. The unemployment rate is coming down and people are going back to work. People can go to amusement parks, they can go on an inside-the-U.S. trip, they can go out to eat. You’re seeing everything open,” Moynihan said to CNBC.

Moynihan’s comparison excluded 2020 due to the abnormal nature of the economy during the coronavirus pandemic.

Moynihan used the increase in consumer spending to address the growth of the U.S. economy during an interview with ABC’s “Face the Nation.” He explained that consumers currently have a lot of money from the stimulus checks in their checking accounts and somewhere between 65% and 70% of the last rounds of stimulus checks have yet to be spent.

With the last round of stimulus checks passed through Congress in March, the total amount of coronavirus aid reached $5 trillion. This money helped consumers avoid a wave of defaults across credit cards, mortgages and auto loans that would have occurred during the pandemic if not for the relief.

“The spending by our consumer, which is a trillion and four so far this year, is up 20% over ‘19 and obviously a lot over ‘20. And what that really tells you is that you’re seeing a 10% growth rate, which is a faster growth rate on a bigger amount,” explained Moynihan.

During his conversation with CNBC, Moynihan told the network that nearly all the spending categories have recovered with the exception of travel, which is still as much as 15% lower than in 2019.

Moynihan also indicated that the Federal Reserve likely no longer needs to remain as aggressive in its easy-money policy. In March, the last time the Federal Reserve released quarterly economic forecasts, most officials expected to keep the Fed’s benchmark interest rate near zero through 2023. The Fed is set to release updated projections for interest rates this week.