NEWSFLASH: Consumer Confidence Soars in January

07 Apr Posted by in Swag Projects | Comments
NEWSFLASH: Consumer Confidence Soars in January

Reaching a five-month high, consumer confidence increased sharply in January, according to a new report released by The Conference Board, a private research firm. The group’s latest confidence index rose to 80.7 in January – up from a revised 77.5 in December – beating most forecasts by at least two points. While not at levels demonstrating an economic acceleration, the index is now about 30 points higher than it was during the recession of 2008 and 2009.

“Consumer confidence advanced in January for the second consecutive month,” said Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at The Conference Board, in a statement. “All in all, confidence appears to be back on track and rising expectations suggest the economy will pick up some momentum in the months ahead.”

A variety of Conference Board indicators have turned higher, according to data. The firm’s forward-looking expectations index jumped to 81.8 in January from a downwardly revised 79 in December. The present situation index rose to 79.1, up from its previous reading of 75.3. Survey data also showed 12.7% of consumers believe jobs are “plentiful,” while 32.6% think jobs are “hard to get” – both modest improvements compared to late 2013.

“Consumers’ assessment of the present situation continues to improve, with both business conditions and the job market rated more favorably,” Franco said. About 16% of those surveyed expect their incomes will improve this year, while 13.6% now believe their incomes will decrease. Those expecting better business conditions during Q1 and Q2 of 2014 remained unchanged at 17.4%. Finally, consumers’ one-year inflation expectation was at 5.1%, a negligible difference compared to recent Conference Board data.