U.S. Consumer Comfort Falls for Second WeekBy
Americans’ confidence retreated for a second week as consumers’ assessment of the buying climate deteriorated on the heels of higher fuel prices, Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index figures showed Thursday.
The gauge of whether it’s a good time to make purchases has fallen 3.6 points in the last two weeks, the largest decrease over a similar period since 2015 and reflecting a jump in gasoline prices since Hurricane Harvey struck Texas. Even so, strong job growth is helping Americans remain relatively upbeat about their finances as well as the economy. The comfort index remains close to the 16-year high reached two weeks ago and suggests consumer spending will stay resilient.
- Comfort index fell among most income groups, including to an eight-week low among those making from $15,000 to $24,900
- Index declined in three of four regions; rose in the West
- Measure advanced among part-time workers to 53.9, the highest since 2006, from 49.9
- Sentiment gap narrowed between Republicans and Democrats for the first time in five weeks