U.S. Consumer Confidence Falters in June After May Rebound

the modest curtailment in optimism suggests that consumers do not foresee the economy gaining much momentum in the months ahead

U.S. Consumer Confidence Retreats Slightly in March Following 18-Year High Seen in February
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June 28, 2018

Following a May rebound, U.S. consumer confidence fell in June.

The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index now stands at 126.4, down from the 128.8 seen in May.

How are consumers feeling?

Consumers' appraisal of current conditions was relatively unchanged in June. The percentage of those stating that business conditions are "good" decreased from 38.6 percent to 36.0 percent, while those saying that business conditions are "bad" also decreased from 12.6 percent to 11.7 percent.

Labor Market

Consumers' assessment of the labor market was also mixed in June. The percentage of consumers claiming that jobs are "plentiful" decreased from 42.1 percent to 40.0 percent, but those claiming that jobs are "hard to get" also decreased from 15.6 percent to 14.9 percent.

The Short-Term OUtlook

Consumers' optimism about the short-term outlook eased in June. The percentage of consumers anticipating business conditions to improve over the next six months decreased from 23.3 percent to 21.4 percent, while those expecting business conditions to worsen rose from 7.8 percent to 9.8 percent.

Job Prospects

Consumers' outlook for the labor market, however, was slightly more favorable in June. The proportion expecting more jobs in the months ahead increased marginally from 19.7 percent to 20.0 percent, while those anticipating fewer jobs decreased from 13.1 percent to 12.6 percent.

Regarding their short-term income prospects, the percentage of consumers expecting an improvement declined from 21.4 percent to 18.8 percent, while the proportion expecting a decrease in income rose from 8.0 percent to 8.7 percent.

What's next?

Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board, says that U.S. consumers do not expect much in the way of additional economic growth in the coming months.

"Consumers' assessment of present-day conditions was relatively unchanged [in June], suggesting that the level of economic growth remains strong." said Franco.

That being said, "while expectations remain high by historical standards, the modest curtailment in optimism suggests that consumers do not foresee the economy gaining much momentum in the months ahead," Franco continued.

About the Consumer Confidence Survey

The monthly Consumer Confidence Survey, based on a probability-design random sample, is conducted for The Conference Board by Nielsen, a global provider of information and analytics around what consumers buy and watch.