Consumer Comfort Hits Two-Year Low
The holiday spirit has not yet seized consumers. While many stores were full on Black Friday, the economic outlook is bleak and assessment of current conditions is as negative as it has been in more than two years.
In last week's report, economic pessimism hit its highest level in 17 years, and now, this week's Washington Post-ABC News Consumer Comfort Index (CCI) has dipped to its lowest point since October 2005.
At -21, the CCI reflects consumers' increasingly negative views of the buying climate, their personal finances and the state of the national economy. These are the three compoents of the Post-ABC index, and compared with sentiment heading into the holiday season last year, Americans are significantly less positive about each. Two-thirds now rate the national economy negatively and nearly seven in 10 call it a bad time to make purchases. A majority, 55 percent, rate their own finances positively, but this too is down substantionally from a year ago.
Consumers' concerns mirror the dour outlook from the Federal Reserve. Negative economic news - oil prices approaching $100 a barrel and pump prices again topping $3.00 per gallon, housing prices on the decline and a weak dollar - has precipitated similar pessimism even from Wall Street.
Amid all this gloom, an improved outlook among consumers may take more holiday cheer than even Santa Claus can handle.
The Washington Post-ABC News CCI is a measure of consumer confidence based on responses to economic questions on the state of the national economy, the state of consumers' own personal finances and whether or not it is a good time to buy. The index is a rolling average based on telephone interviews with 1,000 adults conducted over a four-week period ending Nov. 25. The results have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points.
More information on the CCI can be found here.
Posted by: Kevin Morgan | November 27, 2007 6:41 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: Cheryl | December 1, 2007 8:45 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: junebug9257 | December 2, 2007 12:26 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: votenic | December 3, 2007 12:53 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: lauralion | December 5, 2007 7:48 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: hand | December 22, 2007 7:54 PM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.