Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Stat of the Day: Consumer Confidence Lowest on Record

According to the Conference Board, it's consumer confidence index fell to its lowest level since they began tracking it in 1967. This isn't surprising considering the large drops in housing prices and stocks. It's definitely a sign that consumers are gloomy. Does it mean that consumers won't spend? Thats yet to be seen as this report usually doesn't match what consumers actually spend. Some random consumer answers a phone and responds that they are gloomy then they go out to the mall and buy some clothes. Thats basically how the reporting works. Falling gas prices are more likely to impact consumer spending then the stock market or a house. Gas more directly impacts the monthly budget of most consumers, while big ticket items are the ones most likely impacted by housing and stock declines. So expect a weak holiday, but don't bet the house that this report accurately reflects spending.

  • The Conference Board said the consumer confidence index fell to 38, down from a revised 61.4 in September and significantly below analysts' expectations of 52.
  • That's the lowest level for the index since the Conference Board began tracking consumer sentiment in 1967, and the third-steepest drop. A year ago, the index stood at 95.2.

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