Consumer confidence edges up in July

The Consumer Confidence Index edged up in July to 106.5 points, from June’s 105.4, the nonprofit Conference Board reported Tuesday. Analysts had expected the CCI to decline to 104 points.

The board’s Present Situation Index rose to 133.0 points, from 132.2, as the Expectations Index edged up to 88.8 from June’s 87.5.

“Consumer confidence continues to hold steady, with the prognosis little changed from last month,” said Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center. “Present day conditions remain favorable, though not as strong as earlier this year. Expectations for the months ahead remain cautious, and also below levels earlier this year.”

Consumers claiming conditions are “good” increased, to 27.6 percent from June’s 26.6 percent, but those saying conditions are “bad” also increased, to 15.5 percent from 15 percent.

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The current labor outlook was little changed. Consumers saying jobs are “plentiful” increased to 28.6 percent from 28 percent, while those saying jobs are “hard to get” were virtually unchanged at 19.9 percent. The outlook for the months ahead was mixed, with respondents the expecting more jobs to become available edging down, to 14.4 percent from 15.6 percent, as those expecting fewer jobs also declined, to 16.7 percent from 17.3 percent.

The proportion of anticipating their incomes to increase in the months ahead was “virtually unchanged,” at 17.7 percent. Those expecting business conditions to worsen decreased, to 11.1 percent from 11.9 percent; those expecting business conditions to improve also decreased, to 16.4 percent from 16.8 percent.

The monthly Consumer Confidence Survey is based on a representative sample of 5,000 U.S. households; the monthly survey is conducted for The Conference Board by global research giant TNS. The cutoff date for July’s preliminary results was July 18.

Source: The Conference Board