Post-ABC CCI Reaches a New Low for 2007
As national gas prices continue to surge, consumer confidence has now sagged to its lowest level in nearly eight months.
This week, the Washington Post-ABC Consumer Comfort Index (CCI) is at -9 on its scale of -100 to +100, down six points over the past two weeks. The CCI has not been this low since the beginning of October.
The slide in confidence parallels the rise in gas prices, which have spiked to near-record territory. Yesterday, the Department of Energy reported that the average cost of a gallon of unleaded gas was $3.22, nearly reaching its inflation-adjusted high from 1981.
The CCI is a weekly assessment based on a combination of public opinion about the state of the national economy, the buying climate and personal finances.
At -9, the CCI matches the index's long-term average in weekly polls since 1985.
Since the Post-ABC index was last in positive territory in early March, ratings of the buying climate (historically sensitive to pump prices) and the national economy have dipped significantly.
In the current survey, six in 10 Americans rated the national economy negatively and nearly two-thirds said now is not a good time to buy. Both ratings are at their lowest levels since last fall.
Republicans, at +28, continued to express higher confidence than Democrats (-23) and independents (-22). Among independents, confidence is now at its lowest level since Oct. 8, 2006, about a month before the 2006 midterm elections.
More information about the Post-ABC CCI, including full methodological details, is available here.
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