Consumer Confidence At Highest Since Recession

Consumer confidence is on the rise, reaching its highest level since the recession. The Consumer Confidence Index reached 104.1 in September, up from 101.8 in August. It was the second consecutive increase in confidence, according to The Conference Board, which publishes the index each month.

Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at The Conference Board, said consumers were feeling positive about present-day conditions, thanks to, in part, a more robust labor market. The Present Situation Index rose from 125.3 to 128.5 in September. “Looking ahead, consumers are more upbeat about the short-term employment outlook, but somewhat neutral about business conditions and income prospects,” Franco added. “Overall, consumers continue to rate current conditions favorably and foresee moderate economic expansion in the months ahead.”

The monthly consumer confidence survey, based on a probability-design random sample, is conducted by Nielsen. It’s a closely followed barometer of consumer attitudes, measuring confidence toward business conditions, short-term outlook, personal finances and jobs.

In September, those stating business conditions are “good” decreased from 30.3% to 27.4%. However, those saying business conditions are “bad” declined from 18.2% to 16.2%. Appraisal of the labor market was more positive. Those stating jobs were “plentiful” increased from 26.8% to 27.9%, while those claiming they are “hard to get” declined from 22.8% to 21.6%.