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Consumer Comfort in U.S. Falls to Lowest Level in Two Months

Consumer Comfort in U.S. Falls to Lowest Level in Two Months
An index of the buying climate, one of the three components of the index, fell to minus 44.7, its lowest reading since May. Photographer: Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg

July 26 (Bloomberg) -- Consumer confidence in the U.S. fell last week to the lowest level in two months as Americans became more concerned about sluggish growth in employment.

The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index fell to minus 38.5 in the week ended July 22 from minus 37.9 in the previous period.

An index of the buying climate, one of the three components of the index, fell to minus 44.7, its lowest reading since May. A gauge of personal finances rose to 1.2 from 0.7, and a measure of the state of the economy improved to minus 71.9 from minus 72.8.

The confidence of full-time workers dropped to minus 32, the lowest level since February. Sentiment among households earning more than $100,000 turned positive for the first time in five weeks.

The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index, produced by Langer Research Associates, is based on responses to telephone interviews with a random sample of 1,000 consumers 18 years old and older.

Each week, 250 respondents are surveyed, and the percentage of negative responses is subtracted from the share of positive views and divided by three. The most recent reading is based on the average of responses over the previous four weeks.

The comfort index can range from 100, indicating every participant in the survey had a positive response to all three components, to minus 100, signaling all views were negative. The margin of error for the headline reading is 3 percentage points.

Editors: Christopher Wellisz

To contact the reporter on this story: Caroline Fairchild in Washington at cfairchild2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Chris Wellisz at cwellisz@bloomberg.net

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