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Author Topic: Yay! Some GOOD news about the economy!  (Read 5816 times)
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Monkey Junky Jr.
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« Reply #40 on: May 26, 2009, 12:32:54 PM »

Consumer confidence soars in May

NEW YORK Consumer confidence extended its rebound in May, soaring to the highest level since last September as more shoppers are feeling the worst of the recession is behind them.

The Conference Board said Tuesday that its Consumer Confidence Index, which had dramatically increased in April, zoomed past economists' expectations to 54.9 from a revised 40.8 in April. Economists surveyed by Thomson Reuters were expecting 42.3. In February, confidence levels had hit a new historic low of 25.3.

The reading marks the highest in eight months when the level was 61.4. The levels are also closer to the year-ago's 58.1, though the widely watched barometer is still below 100, which indicates a healthy economy.

The Present Situation Index, which measures how shoppers feel now about the economy, rose to 28.9 from 25.5 last month. But the Expectations Index, which measures shoppers' outlook over the next six months, climbed to 72.3 from 51.0 in April.

Investors focused on the upbeat sentiment reading, shaking off a mostly downbeat report on the housing market, also released Tuesday. In midmorning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 130.62, or 1.6 percent, to 8,407.94.

"Looking ahead, consumers are considerably less pessimistic than they were earlier this year, and expectations are that business conditions, the labor market and incomes will improve in the coming months," Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center, said in a statement. "While confidence is still weak by historic standards, as far as consumers are concerned, the worst is now behind us."

The confidence report offered encouraging news to merchants,which are counting on consumers to be in the mood to spend after confidence plummeted to historic lows late last year but has been rising since March. A two-month stock rally has helped make shoppers feel a little better about their retirement funds, spurring dramatic rebounds in confidence in April and May levels.

Meanwhile, better-than-expected earnings results from such retailers as Sears Holdings Corp. and Gap Inc. have offered the latest evidence that spending has begun to stabilize, though overall business is still weak.

The size of the monthly increases in April and May in consumer confidence encouraged economists. Gary Thayer, chief economist at Wells Fargo Advisors, says that unless the economy suffers from major financial shocks, it looks like "we've turned the corner" on confidence.

"This is a significant change," said Thayer. "While (consumers) are unhappy about their job situation and their home values, they see light at the end of the tunnel." He added, however, sentiment has a way to go before shoppers go back to splurging. That can only happen when the job and housing markets, which have been holding down sentiment, start to turn around.


BETH HOLLOWAY: "We will not let this go until we take Natalee home. It will never end."
Monkey All Star Jr.
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« Reply #41 on: May 26, 2009, 06:24:10 PM »

Is the consumer confidence sustainable under the Obama administration?  When energy bills start rising 50% to 200% or more due to the Obama 'cap & trade' tax plan for America, will anyone have money left to spend?  Feel confident?

I expect gas prices to zoom quickly past $5 a gallon under Obama and two to four years from now, before his term is up, to be over $10 a gallon.  Consumers now have to contend with oil price instability from several sources - OPEC, China/India demand, and the Obama taxes.

Will consumer confidence be sustained over time?


All my posts are just my humble opinions.  Please take with a grain of salt.  Smile

It doesn't do any good to hate anyone,
they'll end up in your family anyway...
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