Conference Board Sept. consumer confidence index falls to 119.8

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The consumer confidence index decreased to 119.8 in September from a revised 120.4 last month, The Conference Board reported Tuesday.

The August index was originally reported as 122.9.

Economists polled by Thomson Reuters predicted a 120.0 reading for the index.

The present situation index fell to 146.1 from a revised 148.4, first reported as 151.2, while the expectations index grew to 102.2 from a revised 101.7, first reported as 104.0.

“Consumer confidence decreased slightly in September after a marginal improvement in August,” said Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators for The Conference Board. “Confidence in Texas and Florida, however, decreased considerably, as these two states were the most severely impacted by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Despite the slight downtick in confidence, consumers’ assessment of current conditions remains quite favorable and their expectations for the short-term suggest the economy will continue expanding at its current pace.”

Business conditions were called “good” by 33.9% of respondents in September, off from 34.5% of respondents in August. Those saying conditions are “bad” rose to 13.8% from 13.2%.

The percentage of consumers expecting a pickup in business conditions in the next half year grew to 20.2% from 19.8%, while 9.9% said they expect conditions to worsen, up from 8.0% in the prior month.

On the jobs front, those who believe jobs are “plentiful” slid to 32.6% from 34.4% in last month, while the number saying jobs are “hard to get” fell to 18.1% from 18.4%. The respondents who see fewer jobs becoming available in a half year, increased to 13.5% from 13.2%. Those expecting more jobs to become available soared to 19.5% from 16.8%, The Conference Board reported.

The consumer confidence survey is based on a probability design random sample by the Nielsen Company.

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