2012 Economic Calendar
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Consumer Confidence
Released On 5/29/2012 10:00:00 AM For May, 2012
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Consumer Confidence - Level69.2 64.9 69.7 67.5  to 72.0 64.9 

Highlights
Retreating significantly this month is the Conference Board's consumer confidence index which is no longer testing recovery highs. The index fell nearly four points to 64.9 vs a downwardly revised 68.7 in April. This decline is in direct contrast to the consumer sentiment index which, in data released on Friday by Reuters/University of Michigan, broke out to new recovery highs.

The strength behind the sentiment index is centered in the expectations component, which contrasts again with the consumer confidence report where expectations, at 77.6 vs April's 80.4, show the least optimism since January. The consumer confidence data also show a decline in the assessment of the present situation, where a steep fall to 45.9 vs 51.2 is another contrast with the consumer sentiment report. The decline in the present situation in today's report includes declines in the assessment of the jobs market which is not a good indication for the government's monthly employment report on Friday.

Inflation expectations, at 5.6 percent vs 5.8 percent in April, are down but it isn't giving much of a lift to the Conference Board's sample. This report and the consumer sentiment report have been tracking very closely over the recovery which underscores how odd the dislocation is this month. Perhaps the two will come together during June, but for right now it's hard to judge the consumer's mood.

Recent History Of This Indicator
The Conference Board's consumer confidence index in April slipped three tenths to a no better than soft 69.2. But there is good news led by a 3.2 percentage point decline to 37.5 percent in those who say jobs are hard to get right now. More also say business conditions are currently good while inflation expectations, reflecting the easing in gas prices, are down four tenths in the month to 5.8 percent. An offsetting factor was a 1.5 percentage point decline to 14.0 percent for those who see their income rising.

Definition
The Conference Board compiles a survey of consumer attitudes on the economy. The headline Consumer Confidence Index is based on consumers' perceptions of current business and employment conditions, as well as their expectations for six months hence regarding business conditions, employment, and income. Three thousand households across the country are surveyed each month. In general, while the level of consumer confidence is associated with consumer spending, the two do not move in tandem each and every month.  Why Investors Care
 
[Chart]
Typically retail sales will move in tandem with consumer optimism - although not necessarily each and every month.
Data Source: Haver Analytics
 

 

2012 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/312/283/274/245/296/267/318/289/2511/111/2712/27
Release For: JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
 


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