Consumer Confidence Ebbed in February

The Consumer Confidence Index, reported by the Conference Board, ebbed in February.

The Consumer Confidence Index declined to 92.2 in February, from 97.9 in January. After a modest increase in January, both the present situation index and the expectations index decreased in February. The present situation index in February decreased to 112.1, from 116.7 in January; the expectations index dropped to 78.9 in February, from 85.3 in January.

In February, consumers were more pessimistic about the current condition and the short-term outlook than in January. In February, 19.8% of respondents reported that the present business conditions were “bad”, an increase from 18.8% in January. Also, the share of respondents expecting business conditions to worsen over the next six months increased by 1.3%, to 12.0% in February.

Feb Figure1

The Conference Board also reported the shares of respondents planning to buy a home within six months. The share of respondents planning to buy a lived-in home within six months dropped to 2.5 % in February, from 3.7% in January. The share of respondents planning to buy a new home within six months declined to 1.1% in February, from 1.2% in January.

Overall, despite the monthly volatility, the trends in the shares of respondents planning to buy a new home and the shares of respondents planning to buy a lived-in home within six months are climbing up from the trough and consumer confidence remains at a relatively high level by historical standards.

Feb Figure2



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