U.S. Consumer Comfort Increased Last Week From Three-Month Low

  • Buying-climate gauge registers biggest gain since June 2015
  • Measure of consumers’economic expectations unchanged in August

Consumer confidence rose last week from a three-month low as Americans felt better about the economy, their financial situation and the buying climate, according to the weekly Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index released Thursday.

Key Points

  • Comfort gauge climbed to 43.6 for the period ended Aug. 14 from 41.8
  • Sentiment on the economy rose 1 point to 35.7
  • Buying climate measure climbed 2.4 points, the most since June 2015, to 39.8
  • Personal finances index increased to 55.3 from an eight-month low of 53.4
  • Gauge of consumer expectations unchanged at 44.5 in August

Big Picture

Last week marked just the third significant weekly change in a year of stable readings. All three moves have occurred in the last two months, perhaps signaling there will be more volatility as the November election approaches. For now, the consumer is feeling good about a robust jobs market and higher wages, which have filtered through into better home and auto sales. Stable sentiment was seen by Federal Reserve policy makers as continuing to support spending, according to minutes of their July meeting issued Wednesday.

The Details

  • Sentiment among Americans earning over $100,000 a year highest since April
  • Confidence among renters rises to five-month high of 39.6
  • Comfort for blacks highest since February
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