Consumer Confidence Index Holds Steady in July

July 29, 2008

This article is included in these additional categories:

Retail & E-Commerce

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, which had declined in June, held steady in July and now stands at 51.9 (1985=100), up slightly from an upward-revised 51.0 in June, the Conference Board reported?(via RetailerDaily).

The Present Situation Index was virtually unchanged at 65.3 versus 65.4 in June, and the Expectations Index increased moderately to 43.0 from 41.4 in June, according to the Conference Board.

“Looking ahead, while consumers remain extremely grim about short-term prospects, the modest improvement in expectations, often a harbinger of economic times to come, bears careful watching over the next few months,” said Lynn Franco, director of the Conference Board Consumer Research Center.

Other findings issued by the Board:

  • Consumers’ appraisal of present-day conditions remained quite bleak in July. Those claiming business conditions are “bad” increased slightly to 32.8% from 31.9% in June; those claiming business conditions are “good” rose to 13.1% from 11.5%.
  • Consumers’ appraisal of the labor market remained negative. Those saying jobs are “hard to get” edged up to 30.3% from 29.7% in June; those claiming jobs are “plentiful” declined to 13.5% from 14.1%.
  • Consumers’ outlook, while slightly improved from last month, continues to be pessimistic. Consumers anticipating business conditions to worsen over the next six months eased to 32.4% from 33.5%; those expecting conditions to improve edged up to 9.3% from 8.5% in June.
  • The outlook for the labor market remains gloomy:
    • The percentage of consumers expecting fewer jobs in the months ahead increased to 37.1% from 35.7%; those anticipating more jobs remained virtually unchanged at 8.2%.
    • The proportion of consumers expecting their incomes to increase rose to 14.2% from 13.1%.

About the data: The Consumer Confidence Survey is based on a representative sample of 5,000 US households. The monthly survey is conducted for The Conference Board by TNS. The cutoff date for June’s preliminary results was July 22.


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