The US Conference Board Consumer Confidence
Index, which had increased in December, retreated in January. The Index now
stands at 61.1 (1985=100), down from 64.8 in December. The Present Situation
Index declined to 38.4 from 46.5. The Expectations Index edged down to 76.2 from
77.0 in December. The monthly Consumer Confidence Survey, based on
a probability-design random sample, is conducted for the Conference Board by
Nielsen, a leading global provider of information and analytics around what
consumers buy and watch. The cutoff date for the preliminary results was January
Lynn Franco, director of The Conference
Board Consumer Research Center said: "Consumer
Confidence retreated in January, after large back-to-back gains in the final two
months of 2011. Consumers' assessment of current business and labor market
conditions turned more downbeat and is back to November 2011 levels.
the short-term outlook, consumers are more upbeat about employment, but less
optimistic about business conditions and their income prospects. Recent
increases in gasoline prices may have consumers feeling a little less confident
Consumers' appraisal of current conditions was
less favourable in January. Those claiming business conditions are "good"
decreased to 13.3% from 16.3%, while those stating business conditions are
"bad" increased to 38.7% from 33.5%. Consumers’ assessment of the labour
market was also less positive. Those saying jobs are "plentiful"
decreased to 6.1% from 6.6%, while those claiming jobs are "hard to get"
increased to 43.5% from 41.6%.
Consumers' short-term outlook was slightly weaker
than it was last month. The proportion of consumers anticipating business
conditions to improve over the next six months decreased to 16.6% from 16.8%,
while those expecting business conditions will worsen increased to 15.1% from
13.4%. Consumers' outlook for the labour market, however, was moderately more
Those expecting more jobs in the months ahead
increased to 16.2% from 14.0%, while those anticipating fewer jobs declined to
19.5% from 20.2%. The proportion of consumers expecting an increase in their
incomes declined to 13.8% from 16.3%.
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