Keeping you up to date on the latest data releases.
Preliminary numbers show that the University of Michigan’s Index of Consumer Sentiment increased to 82.5 in early December, up from 75.1 in November. This increase erased the declines seen over the past three months. The gains seen this month were due to improvements among households with incomes below $75,000. The current economic conditions subindex increased to 97.9 from 88.0 in November. Consumer expectations increased to 72.7 in December, up from a reading of 66.8 in November. The gains for the month were driven by an improved outlook for the economy, including job prospects. The improved outlook for jobs was attributed to consumers holding a more favorable outlook for the overall economy in the next year. Finally, buying attitudes toward household durables increased to the highest level in more than six years, to 155 from 136 in November.
As for inflation expectations in early December, consumers expect a year-ahead inflation rate of 3.0 percent and a longer-term (five- to ten-year) rate of 2.8 percent.