The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index rebounded strongly in April after declining in March, beating the forecast.
The Index now stands at 129.2 (1985=100), up from 124.2 in March. The consensus forecast was looking for 127.1, ranging from a low of 122.0 to a high of 130.0.
|Consumer Confidence Index||124.1||127.1||122.0 — 130.0||129.2|
“Consumer Confidence partially rebounded in April, following March’s decline, but still remains below levels seen last Fall,” said Lynn Franco, Senior Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board. “The Present Situation Index, which had decreased sharply last month, improved in April, as did consumers’ short-term outlook.”
Consumers’ assessment of current conditions improved in April. The Present Situation Index – based on consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions – rose, from 163.0 to 168.3.
Those stating business conditions are “good” rose from 34.7% to 37.3%, while those saying business conditions are “bad” fell from 12.4% to 11.7%.
Consumers’ assessment of the labor market was also more positive. The percentage stating jobs are “plentiful” rose from 42.5% to 46.8%, while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” fell from 13.8% to 13.3%.
Consumers’ short-term outlook also improved in April. The Expectations Index – which is based on consumers’ short-term outlook for income, business and labor market conditions – rose from 98.3 last month to 103.0.
The percentage of consumers expecting business conditions will be better six months from now rose from 17.2% to 19.9%. The percentage expecting business conditions to worsen fell from 10.0% to 9.1%.
Consumers’ outlook for the labor market was more favorable.
The proportion expecting more jobs in the months ahead rose from 16.8% to 17.2%, while those anticipating fewer jobs fell from 14.3% to 13.2%. On their short-term income prospects, the percentage of consumers expecting an improvement was unchanged at 21.5%, while the proportion expecting a decline fell from 7.4% to 7.0%.
“Overall, consumers expect the economy to continue growing at a solid pace into the summer months,” Franco added. “These strong confidence levels should continue to support consumer spending in the near-term.”
The monthly Consumer Confidence Survey is based on a probability-design random sample and is conducted for The Conference Board by Nielsen. The cutoff date for the preliminary results was April 18.