US Consumer Sentiment on Track for Best Year Since 2000
- Consumers ready to Pick Up Spending Heading into Holiday Season
- US consumers have greater certainty about job and income prospects.
- University of Michigan’s (MSI) consumer sentiment index flat to unchanged but remains strong
US consumer sentiment topped analysts expectations to stay on track for its best year in almost 20 years.
The University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment index (MSI) came in at 98.3 in a preliminary early November reading from 98.6 in October.
Economists polled expected the preliminary reading to come in at 98.0
Five years ago, the index was at 75.1.
The MSI survey reflects responses received from 24 October to 7 November, the day after midterm Congressional elections that saw Republicans add to their control of the US Senate, and the Dems take control of the US house for the 1 time in 8 years.
The MSI consumer confidence report showed little change in the gap between Democrats and Republicans on economic expectations.
At the same time, US consumers had greater certainty about job and income prospects.
“Consumer sentiment remained virtually unchanged in early November from its October reading,” the chief economist for the Surveys of Consumers, said in a statement.
“The unchanged data meant that the Sentiment Index remained higher thus far in 2018 (98.4) than in any prior year since 2000,” he said.
“The stability of consumer sentiment at high levels acts to mask some important underlying shifts. Income expectations have improved and consumers anticipate continued robust growth in employment, but consumers also anticipate rising inflation and higher interest rates,” he said.
“Younger consumers have benefited most from more positive income trends and older consumers are more likely to complain about the erosion of their living standards due to rising prices; rising interest rates weigh heavily on younger consumers who are more likely to borrow, and older consumers are more likely to benefit from higher returns on their savings,” he said.
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