2012 Economic Calendar
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Consumer Sentiment  
Released On 6/29/2012 9:55:00 AM For Jun(f), 2012
PriorConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Sentiment Index - Level74.1 74.1 73.5  to 79.0 73.2 

Consumer sentiment is edging further down to new 2012 lows, at 73.2 for the final June reading which, given a 74.1 reading at mid-month, points to a low 72 reading for the final two weeks. The index opened the year at 75.0.

Weakness is apparent in both expectations, down 1.1 points to 67.8, and in currents conditions which is 6 tenths lower to 81.5. A new reading for the report, the 12-month outlook, is definitely on the decline, down 3 points from mid-month to 72 which is down 12 points from May.

Inflation expectations edged 1 tenth higher from mid-month for both the 1- and 5-year outlooks, at 3.1 and 2.8 percent respectively. But these readings, especially the 1-year, are well down from the early spring and are in line with easing gas prices.

Today's consumer sentiment report makes for three strikes this morning for US data with personal income & spending and the Chicago PMI also signaling that conditions are turning flat. The Dow, despite the weakness in today's data, is holding strong gains tied to European policy moves.

Consensus Outlook
The Reuter's/University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index in June fell 5.2 points to 74.1, putting the index at a 2012 low. The latest sentiment report was for the first two weeks of this month and it showed 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.

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.)

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