Preliminary Results for April 2015
Apr Mar Apr M-M Y-Y
2015 2015 2014 Change Change
Index of Consumer Sentiment 95.9 93.0 84.1 +3.1% +14.0%
Current Economic Conditions 108.2 105.0 98.7 +3.0% +9.6%
Index of Consumer Expectations 88.0 85.3 74.7 +3.2% +17.8%
Next data release: May 1, 2015 for Final April data at 10am ET
Surveys of Consumers chief economist, Richard Curtin
Consumer optimism rebounded in early April to its second highest level since 2007. More importantly, consumer optimism has recorded a higher average level during the last five months than anytime since May 2004. While there were some important exceptions, the cumulative improvement in a broad range of economic assessments are now comparable to the peak levels recorded in the mid 2000's (although still well below the peaks in earlier decades). The major exception has been in the expected size of future income gains. While expected income gains have improved over the recent recession lows, they have remained quite weak. Although lower inflation expectations have acted to bolster real income expectations, they also still remain at historically low levels. Consumers' spending has become increasingly dependent on low interest rates even as they widely expect interest rate increases during the year ahead. Importantly, few consumers now anticipate that the Fed would raise rates enough to affect their current purchase plans. Overall, the data continue to support a 3.3% growth rate in personal consumption expenditures during 2015, even with a weather diminished 1st quarter performance.