Consumer confidence in U.S. fell more than forecast in Dec.

CONSUMER CONFIDENCE in the United States fell to 65.1 from a revised 71.5 in November, 1.5 more than forecast.
Posted 12/27/12

WASHINGTON - Confidence among U.S. consumers declined more than forecast in December as the budget debate in Washington soured Americans’ outlook for the economy.

The Conference Board’s index of sentiment fell to 65.1 from a revised 71.5 reading the prior month, figures from the New York-based private research group showed today. The gauge was projected to fall to 70, according to the Bloomberg survey median.

A drop in consumer expectations for the next six months to a one-year low coincides with mounting concerns about looming tax increases and government budget cuts in 2013 that threaten the expansion. At the same time, employment gains, rising home values, and lower gas prices may keep spending, which accounts for about 70 percent of the economy, from foundering.

“The sudden turnaround in expectations was most likely caused by uncertainty surrounding the oncoming fiscal cliff,” Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at the Conference Board, said in a statement. “While consumers are quite negative about the short-term outlook, they are more upbeat than last month about current business and labor market conditions.”

Applications for jobless benefits decreased by 12,000 to 350,000 in the week ended Dec. 22, a Labor Department report showed today. Economists forecast 360,000 claims, according to the Bloomberg survey median.

Estimates for consumer confidence ranged from 62.6 to 79 in the Bloomberg survey of 66 economists. The measure averaged 53.7 during the recession that ended in June 2009.

Present Conditions

The Conference Board’s measure of present conditions climbed to 62.8 this month, the highest since August 2008, from 57.4 in November. The gauge of expectations for the next six months decreased to 66.5 from 80.9.

The percent of respondents expecting more jobs to become available in the next six months decreased to 17 from 19.5 the previous month.

The figures stand in contrast to Bloomberg’s Consumer Comfort Index, which held close to a four-year high last week. The comfort index eased to minus 32.1 in the period ended Dec. 23 from minus 31.9 the week before.

PBN Hosted

Join PBN for the best networking event and party of the winter - January 15, 2015 - the Book of Lists Party at the Providence Public Library. Reserve your spot early!
  • Best Places to Work
    Enrollment is now open for the 7th annual Best Places to Work program. Winners w ...
  • Manufacturing Awards
    Applications are now being accepted for the 2nd Annual Manufacturing Awards. Dea ...
Purchase Data
Book of Lists
Book of Lists cover
PBN's annual Book of Lists has been an essential resource for the local business community for almost 30 years. The Book of Lists features a wealth of company rankings from a variety of fields and industries, including banking, health care, real estate, law, hospitality, education, not-for-profits, technology and many more.
Data icons
Data can be purchased as single lists, in either Excel or PDF format; the entire database of the published book, in Excel format; or a printed copy of the Book of Lists.
  • Purchase an e-File of a single list
  • Purchase an e-File of the entire Book of Lists database
  • Purchase a printed copy of the Book of Lists
    Latest News