Michigan Consumer Sentiment Falls for Fourth Consecutive Month
Consumer sentiment fell for a fourth consecutive month in November according to the final report for the Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index. The index came in at 61.3, down 2.5 points (-3.9%) from the October final. This morning's reading was above the forecast of 60.4.
The Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index is a monthly survey of consumer confidence levels in the U.S. with regards to the economy, personal finances, business conditions, and buying conditions, conducted by the University of Michigan. There are two reports released each month; a preliminary report released mid-month and a final report released at the end of the month.
Joanne Hsu, the director of surveys, made the following comments:
Consumer sentiment fell a modest 2.5 index points, or 4%, from October. While this marks the fourth consecutive month of declines, November’s reading reflects a balance of factors, some of which improved while others worsened. More-favorable current assessments and expectations of personal finances were offset by a notable deterioration in expected business conditions. In particular, long-run business conditions plunged by 15% to its lowest since July 2022. Younger and middle-aged consumers exhibited strong declines in economic attitudes this month, while sentiment of those age 55 and older improved from October.
Year-ahead inflation expectations rose to 4.5% this month, up from 4.2% in October, reaching its highest reading since April 2023. Long-run inflation expectations rose from 3.0% last month to 3.2% this month, a reading last seen in 2011. These expectations have risen in spite of the fact that consumers have taken note of the continued slowdown in inflation; consumers appear worried that the softening of inflation could reverse in the months and years ahead. [More...]