Keeping you up to date on the latest data releases.
Preliminary numbers show that the University of Michigan’s Index of Consumer Sentiment decreased slightly in January to 80.4 from 82.5 in December. Low- and middle-income households are mainly concerned about lackluster growth in employment and income. Both indexes contributed to the decrease. The current economic conditions index dropped to 95.2 from 98.6 in December. Consumer expectations also dropped to 70.9 from 72.1 percent. The majority of consumers reported that the economy is currently expanding and anticipated economic growth to remain unchanged in the year ahead. Consumers did raise concerns about the longer-term prospects. Finally, buying attitudes toward household durables declined in January, while vehicle-buying plans became even more positive. Long-term gas price expectations fell to a nine-year low this month.
As for inflation expectations in early January, consumers expect a year-ahead inflation rate of 3.0 percent and a longer-term (five- to ten-year) rate of 2.9 percent.