2012 Economic Calendar
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Consumer Sentiment  
Released On 6/15/2012 9:55:00 AM For Jun(p), 2012
PriorConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Sentiment Index - Level79.3 77.5 75.0  to 78.0 74.1 

A major 5.2 point drop to 74.1 puts the Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index at a 2012 low and in line with the Conference Board's consumer confidence index which showed wide weakness in May. Today's sentiment report is for the first two weeks of this month and it shows sharp weakness in expectations, down 5.4 points to 68.9 and another 2012 low, and nearly as sharp weakness in current conditions, down 5.1 points to 82.1 which is yet another low for this year. In a new reading for this report, the 12-month economic outlook is down to 82 vs 91 in May.

With oil coming down, inflation expectations don't appear to be a threat to consumer health though five-year expectations in this report show a surprise 2 tenths increase to 2.9 percent. One-year expectations are unchanged at 3.0 percent.

Readings on consumer spirits have been up and down all through the recovery, and unfortunately it looks like the move higher at the beginning of this year was just another head fake. The consumer's sense of confidence is centered on income and a healthy jobs market, areas that are in question right now. With expectations in the markets focused on possible central bank action, the Dow is showing little reaction to today's clearly negative report.

Consensus Outlook
The Reuter's/University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index got a sizeable upgrade for May in the final reading for May, indicating a notably more optimistic second half of the month. The consumer sentiment index jumped to 79.3, up nearly 3 points from April and up 1.5 points from the mid-month reading. This last comparison, which put the index at an implied 80.8 over the past two weeks, indicates that the rise in optimism has picked up intensity. Other readings include month-end recovery bests for both current conditions, at 87.2, and expectations at 74.3.

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.)

2012 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/131/272/102/243/163/304/134/275/115/256/156/297/137/278/17
Release For: JanJanFebFebMa(p)rMarAprAprMayMayJunJunJulJulAug
Released On: 8/319/149/2810/1210/2611/911/2112/712/21
Release For: AugSepSepOctOctNovNovDecDec

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