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U.S. consumer confidence hits post-Recession high

NEW YORK – Sept. 27, 2016 – The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, which increased in August, improved further in September. The Index now stands at 104.1, up from 101.8 in August.
The Present Situation Index rose from 125.3 to 128.5, while the Expectations Index that gauges attitudes about the economy six months from now improved from 86.1 last month to 87.8.
“Consumer confidence increased in September for a second consecutive month and is now at its highest level since the recession,” says Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at The Conference Board. “Consumers’ assessment of present-day conditions improved, primarily the result of a more positive view of the labor market.
“Looking ahead, consumers are more upbeat about the short-term employment outlook, but somewhat neutral about business conditions and income prospects,” she adds. “Overall, consumers continue to rate current conditions favorably and foresee moderate economic expansion in the months ahead.”
Consumers’ assessment of current conditions improved in September. Those stating business conditions are “good” decreased from 30.3 percent to 27.4 percent. However, those saying business conditions are “bad” declined from 18.2 percent to 16.2 percent.
Consumers’ appraisal of the labor market was also more positive than last month. Those stating jobs were “plentiful” increased from 26.8 percent to 27.9 percent, while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” declined from 22.8 percent to 21.6 percent.
Consumers’ optimism regarding the short-term future was more favorable in September. The percentage of consumers expecting business conditions to improve over the next six months decreased from 17.6 percent to 16.5 percent. However, those expecting business conditions to worsen also declined from 11.4 percent to 10.2 percent.
Consumers’ outlook for the labor market was also more upbeat than in August. The proportion expecting more jobs in the months ahead increased from 14.4 percent to 15.1 percent, while those anticipating fewer jobs declined from 17.5 percent to 17.0 percent.
The percentage of consumers expecting their incomes to increase declined from 18.5 percent to 17.1 percent. However, the proportion expecting a decline decreased from 11.0 percent to 10.3 percent.
Nielsen conducts the monthly Consumer Confidence Survey for The Conference Board. It’s based on a probability-design random sample; the cutoff date for the preliminary results was September 15.
© 2016 Florida Realtors®
Source: Florida Realtors Feed

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