We Are Winning Again: Consumer Confidence Booms to Highest Level in 16 Years

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  1. F.I.S.T.

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    We Are Winning Again: Consumer Confidence Booms to Highest Level in 16 Years
    Consumer Confidence Index® | The Conference Board



    Consumer’s confidence in March rocketed to the highest level more than 16 years, according to data released Tuesday. America’s middle class, in particular, registered huge gains in confidence.

    The Conference Board said its consumer confidence index soared to 125.6 in March, up from 116.1 in February. Economists had expected a decline to 114.1.



    Measures of consumer and business confidence continue to defy experts by climbing ever higher since the election of President Donald Trump. Despite media reports of hate crimes and an ongoing narrative that America has unentered a period of uncertainty and ill-will, surveys of consumers show that Americans are feeling better than they have for nearly all of this century.



    The rise in confidence since the election has widespread, cutting across regional and income groups. The biggest rise in confidence came from middle earners. The confidence index for households with incomes between $50,000 and $75,000 has risen from 100.4 prior to the election to 135.2. Households with incomes between $35,000 and $50,000 registered a rise from 79.9 to 113.4. Only those with incomes below $15,000 are less confident now than before the election.



    Consumers are more confident about both their present situations and their expectations for the future, according to the Conference Board. Confidence in the jobs market has improved as well, with those saying jobs are “plentiful” rising while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” falling.

     
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  3. F.I.S.T.

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    The Consumer Confidence Survey® reflects prevailing business conditions and likely developments for the months ahead. This monthly report details consumer attitudes and buying intentions, with data available by age, income, and region.

    The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index Increased Sharply in March

    28 Mar. 2017


    The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index®, which had increased in February, improved sharply in March. The Index now stands at 125.6 (1985=100), up from 116.1 in February. The Present Situation Index rose from 134.4 to 143.1 and the Expectations Index increased from 103.9 last month to 113.8.


    The monthly Consumer Confidence Survey®, based on a probability-design random sample, is conducted for The Conference Board by Nielsen, a leading global provider of information and analytics around what consumers buy and watch. The cutoff date for the preliminary results was March 16.


    “Consumer confidence increased sharply in March to its highest level since December 2000 (Index, 128.6),” said Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board. “Consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions improved considerably. Consumers also expressed much greater optimism regarding the short-term outlook for business, jobs and personal income prospects. Thus, consumers feel current economic conditions have improved over the recent period, and their renewed optimism suggests the possibility of some upside to the prospects for economic growth in the coming months.”


    Consumers’ appraisal of current conditions improved considerably in March. The percentage saying business conditions are “good” increased from 28.3 percent to 32.2 percent, while those saying business conditions are “bad” decreased from 13.4 percent to 12.9 percent. Consumers’ assessment of the labor market was also more positive. The percentage of consumers stating jobs are “plentiful” rose from 26.9 percent to 31.7 percent, while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” decreased moderately, from 19.9 percent to 19.5 percent.


    Consumers were also significantly more optimistic about the short-term outlook. The percentage of consumers expecting business conditions to improve over the next six months increased from 23.9 percent to 27.1 percent, while those expecting business conditions to worsen declined from 10.5 percent to 8.4 percent.


    Consumers’ outlook for the labor market was also more upbeat. The proportion expecting more jobs in the months ahead increased from 20.9 percent to 24.8 percent, while those anticipating fewer jobs declined from 13.6 percent to 12.2 percent. The percentage of consumers expecting their incomes to increase improved from 19.2 percent to 21.5 percent, while the proportion expecting a decrease declined from 8.1 percent to 7.0 percent.





    Source: March 2017 Consumer Confidence Survey®

    The Conference Board



    The Conference Board publishes the Consumer Confidence Index®, at 10 a.m. ET on the last Tuesday of every month. Subscription information and the technical notes to this series are available on The Conference Board website: Consumer Data | The Conference Board.





    About The Conference Board


    The Conference Board is a global, independent business membership and research association working in the public interest. Our mission is unique: To provide the world’s leading organizations with the practical knowledge they need to improve their performance and better serve society. The Conference Board is a non-advocacy, not-for-profit entity holding 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt status in the United States. www.conference-board.org



    ABOUT NIELSEN



    Nielsen Holdings plc (NYSE: NLSN) is a global performance management company that provides a comprehensive understanding of what consumers watch and buy. Nielsen's Watch segment provides media and advertising clients with Total Audience measurement services for all devices on which content — video, audio and text — is consumed. The Buy segment offers consumer packaged goods manufacturers and retailers the industry's only global view of retail performance measurement. By integrating information from its Watch and Buy segments and other data sources, Nielsen also provides its clients with analytics that help improve performance. Nielsen, an S&P 500 company, has operations in over 100 countries, covering more than 90 percent of the world’s population. For more information, visit www.nielsen.com.


    The next release is Tuesday, April 25 at 10 AM.
     

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