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Consumer Confidence Reaches Highest Level Since Jan. 2008

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The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, which had increased in May, improved again in June. The Index now stands at 85.2 (1985=100), up from 82.2 in May. The Present Situation Index increased to 85.1 from 80.3, while the Expectations Index rose to 85.2 from 83.5 in May.

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Consumers’ appraisal of current conditions improved in June. Those claiming business conditions are “good” increased to 23.0% from 21.1%, while those stating business conditions are “bad” decreased to 22.8% from 24.6%. Consumers’ assessment of the job market was also more favorable. Those stating jobs are “plentiful” edged up to 14.7% from 14.2%, while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” declined to 31.8% from 32.2%.

Consumers’ expectations were generally more positive in June. The percentage of consumers expecting business conditions to improve over the next six months increased to 18.8% from 17.7%. However, those expecting business conditions to worsen increased to 11.4% from 10.7%.

Consumers were more positive about the outlook for the labor market. Those anticipating more jobs in the months ahead increased to 16.3% from 15.2%, while those anticipating fewer jobs edged down to 18.7% from 18.9%. Fewer consumers expect their incomes to grow, 15.9% versus 18.0%, but those expecting a drop in their incomes also declined, to 12.1% from 14.5%.

“Consumer confidence continues to advance and the index is now at its highest level since January 2008 (87.3),” says Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at The Conference Board. “June’s increase was driven primarily by improving current conditions, particularly consumers’ assessment of business conditions. Expectations regarding the short-term outlook for the economy and jobs were moderately more favorable, while income expectations were a bit mixed. Still, the momentum going forward remains quite positive.”

The monthly Consumer Confidence Survey, based on a probability-design random sample, is conducted for The Conference Board by Nielsen, a global provider of information and analytics around what consumers buy and watch.

The cutoff date for the preliminary results was June 13.



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