The University of Michigan's consumer sentiment for the US was revised higher to 97.2 in April 2019 from a preliminary 96.9, as the consumer expectations sub-index came in stronger than initially thought.
The consumer expectations sub-index stood at 87.4, above the preliminary reading of 85.8 and compared to March's 88.8. Meanwhile, the gauge for current economic conditions came in at 112.3, below the flash estimate of 114.2 and the previous month's final figure of 113.3. Inflation expectations for the year ahead was unchanged at 2.5 percent in April (vs preliminary 2.4 percent); and the 5-year outlook fell to 2.3 percent, unrevised from early estimates and against March's 2.5 percent.
"The Index of Consumer Sentiment has moved sideways, recording only small monthly variations since Trump first entered office. The Sentiment Index has averaged 97.2 in the past 28 months, identical to the April 2019 reading. Moreover, the Sentiment Index has remained between 95.0 and 99.0 for 21 of the past 28 months. Variations within plus or minus 2.0 percentage points for the Sentiment Index meant that most of the monthly changes were statistically insignificant. The last time consumer sentiment was as favorable for as long a period of time was during the late stages of the Clinton expansion. When asked about their financial prospects for the year ahead, 44% of consumers anticipated improvements compared with just 8% who expected worsening finances. This was the best overall reading since 2004 (see the chart). Moreover, when asked about longer term financial prospects, 60% reported in the April survey that they expected to be better off financially over the next five years. This was the highest proportion ever recorded, although the question was only asked sporadically from 1979 to 1985 and then consistently from 2011 onwards. Overall, the data indicate that inflation-adjusted personal consumption expenditures will grow by 2.5% in 2019.", Surveys of Consumers chief economist, Richard Curtin, said.
4/26/2019 2:08:40 PM