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Consumer Confidence: Nearing Pre-Pandemic Levels

July 27, 2021
Bottom Line:  Consumer confidence came in better than expected, according to the Conference Board, with the headline index edging higher in July after positive revisions to June data. On a trend basis, consumers' assessments of their current situations continued to move higher over the last three months. Their future expectations remained near five-year highs.  More consumers reported jobs were plentiful as fewer reported that jobs were hard to get. Finally, we should note that this survey continues to run stronger than the University of Michigan survey.  This bears watching going forward as sampling issues remain a big issue for all surveys.  Overall, most surveys suggest the consumers continued to spend, if modestly less aggressively, in early 3Q21.
Consumer Confidence ROSE by 0.2 points in July to 129.1, compared with market expectations for a decline to 123.9.  The index is now 40.8% ABOVE its year-ago level.
Present Situation Index
ROSE by 0.7 points to 160.3. The index is 67.2% ABOVE its year-ago level.
The Expectations Index
FELL by 0.1 points to 108.4.  The index is 21.9% ABOVE its year-ago level.
The labor differential, the percentage of respondents who said jobs are “plentiful” from the percentage who said jobs are “hard to get”, moved higher by 0.2 points to 44.4.