NEW YORK – Feb. 26, 2013 – The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index declined in January, but it rebounded in February rising 11.2 points in one month.
The Index now stands at 69.6, up from 58.4 in January. The Present Situation Index increased to 63.3 from 56.2. The Expectations Index, which gauges consumers’ outlooks six months from now, rose to 73.8 from 59.9 last month.
“Consumer confidence rebounded in February as the shock effect caused by the fiscal cliff uncertainty and payroll tax cuts appears to have abated,” says Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at The Conference Board. “Consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions is more positive than last month. Looking ahead, consumers are cautiously optimistic about the outlook for business and labor market conditions. Income expectations, which had turned rather negative last month, have improved modestly.”
Consumers claiming business conditions are “good” right now rose to 18.1 percent from 16.1 percent, while those stating business conditions are “bad” decreased to 27.8 percent from 28.4 percent. Consumers’ appraisal of the labor market was mixed. Those saying jobs are “plentiful” increased to 10.5 percent from 8.5 percent, while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” edged up to 37.0 percent from 36.6 percent.
Consumers expecting business conditions to improve over the next six months increased to 18.9 percent from 15.6 percent, while those expecting business conditions to worsen declined to 16.5 percent from 20.4 percent.
Consumers anticipating more jobs in the months ahead improved to 16.7 percent from 14.4 percent, while those expecting fewer jobs decreased to 21.5 percent from 26.7 percent. The proportion of consumers expecting their incomes to increase rose to 15.7 percent from 13.5 percent, while those anticipating a decrease fell to 19.6 percent from 23.3 percent.
Nielsen, a global provider of information and analytics, conducts the monthly Consumer Confidence Survey based on a probability-design random sample for The Conference Board. The cutoff date for the preliminary results was Feb. 14.
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