2011 Economic Calendar
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Consumer Sentiment  
Released On 1/28/2011 9:55:00 AM For Jan(f), 2011
PriorConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Sentiment Index - Level72.7 73.0 72.0  to 74.5 74.2 

Consumer optimism is as strong as it's been since mid-year based on the implied second-half January reading of the consumer sentiment index. The index rose 1-1/2 points to 74.2 from the mid-month reading of 72.7 pointing to an implied 75.7 level for full-month January for the strongest reading since June.

Details show special strength in expectations, the index's leading component which is also at its best level since June. The assessment of current conditions is tangibly below this time last month. Inflation readings are at their highest levels of the recovery reflecting high energy and food prices.

Consumer spirits are subject most to changes in the jobs market and there's no guarantee that optimism will hold. Optimism was building during the last year's second quarter only to fizzle during the summer. Stocks aren't getting a lift, at least initially, from today's report.

Consensus Outlook
The Reuter's/University of Michigan's Consumer sentiment index slipped 1.8 points from December to a reading of 72.7 for January preliminary. The reversal came from the current conditions component which dropped to 79.8 from 85.3. The reading is the lowest since October. In contrast, the expectations index actually nudged up to 68.2 from 67.5 in December.

The University of Michigan's Consumer Survey Center questions 600 households each month on their financial conditions and attitudes about the economy. Consumer sentiment is directly related to the strength of consumer spending. Consumer confidence and consumer sentiment are two ways of talking about consumer attitudes. Among economic reports, consumer sentiment refers to the Michigan survey while consumer confidence refers to The Conference Board's survey. Preliminary estimates for a month are released at mid-month. Final estimates for a month are released near the end of the month.  Why Investors Care
Consumer sentiment is mainly affected by inflation and employment conditions. However, consumers are also impacted by current events such as bear & bull markets, geopolitical events such as war and terrorist attacks. Investors monitor consumer sentiment because it tends to have an impact on consumer spending over the long run (although not necessarily on a monthly basis.)

2011 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/141/282/112/253/113/254/154/295/135/276/177/17/157/298/12
Release For: JanJanFebFebMarMarAprAprMayMayJunJunJulJulAug
Released On: 8/269/169/3010/1410/2811/1111/2312/912/22
Release For: AugSepSepOctOctNovNovDecDec

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