The Conference Board said Consumer Confidence fell in February for the second straight month. The index fell sharply missing consensus significantly at 102.9 (consensus 108.4) versus a downwardly revised 106.0 (from 107.1) for January. American consumers’ short-term outlook became decidedly gloomy, becoming considerably less upbeat about their short-term income prospects. That is scuppering plans to buy homes, autos, and major appliances. It was also reported that vacation intentions declined in February. In the same period a year ago, the index stood at 105.7.
The Conference Board
US Consumer Confidence February 2023
US CB Consumer Confidence Feb: 102.9 (est 108.4; prev R 106.0)
- Present Situation: 150.9 (prev R 147.4)
- Expectations: 77.8 (prev R 83.4)
“Consumer confidence declined again in February. The decrease reflected large drops in confidence for households aged 35 to 54 and for households earning $35,000 or more,” said Ataman Ozyildirim, Senior Director, Economics at The Conference Board.”
- The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index (1985=100) decreased in February to 102.9 (consensus 108.4) versus a downwardly revised 106.0 (from 107.1) for January. February marked the second straight month that confidence has declined. In the same period a year ago, the index stood at 105.7.
- The Present Situation Index (based on consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions) (1985=100) increased to 152.8 from 151.1.
- The Expectations Index (based on consumers’ short-term outlook for income, business, and labor market conditions) (1985=100) dropped to 69.7 from 76.0
- Expectations is below 80 which often signals a recession within the next year.
“While consumers’ view of current business conditions worsened in February, the Present Situation Index still ticked up slightly based on a more favorable view of the availability of jobs. In fact, the proportion of consumers saying jobs are ‘plentiful’ climbed to 52.0 percent—back to levels seen in the spring of last year. However, the outlook appears considerably more pessimistic when looking ahead. Expectations for where jobs, incomes, and business conditions are headed over the next six months all fell sharply in February.”
“And, while 12-month inflation expectations improved—falling to 6.3 percent from 6.7 percent last month—consumers may be showing early signs of pulling back spending in the face of high prices and rising interest rates. Fewer consumers are planning to purchase homes or autos and they also appear to be scaling back plans to buy major appliances. Vacation intentions also declined in February.”
The Conference Board publishes the Consumer Confidence Index® at 10 a.m. ET on the last Tuesday of every month. Subscription information and the technical notes to this series are available on The Conference Board website: https://www.conference-board.org/data/consumerdata.cfm.
About The Conference Board
The Conference Board is the member-driven think tank that delivers trusted insights for what’s ahead. Founded in 1916, a non-partisan, not-for-profit entity holding 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt status in the United States. www.conference-board.org.
Source: The Conference Board
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