Preliminary Results for August 2017
Aug Jul Aug M-M Y-Y
2017 2017 2016 Change Change
Index of Consumer Sentiment 97.6 93.4 89.8 +4.5% +8.7%
Current Economic Conditions 111.0 113.4 107.0 -2.1% +3.7%
Index of Consumer Expectations 89.0 80.5 78.7 +10.6% +13.1%
Next data release: Friday, September 01, 2017 for Final August data at 10am ET
Surveys of Consumers chief economist, Richard Curtin
Consumer confidence rose in the first half of August to its highest level since January due to a more positive outlook for the overall economy as well as more favorable personal financial prospects. The two component indices moved in opposite directions, with the Current Conditions Index falling slightly from its decade peak, and the Expectations Index posting a more substantial rebound. As with the overall Sentiment Index, the component indices nearly regained the peak levels recorded earlier in 2017. Too few interviews were conducted following Charlottesville to assess how much it will weaken consumers' economic assessments. The fallout is likely to reverse the improvement in economic expectations recorded across all political affiliations in early August. Moreover, the Charlottesville aftermath is more likely to weaken the economic expectations of Republicans, since prospects for Trump's economic policy agenda have diminished. Nonetheless, the partisan difference between the optimism of Republicans and the pessimism of Democrats is still likely to persist, with Independents remaining as the bellwether group. At this point, the data continue to indicate a gain of 2.4% in personal consumption expenditures in 2017.