Consumer Confidence Dips Slightly Amidst Significant Stock Market Sell-Off

Consumer confidence, according to the HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (ESI), experienced a minor decline over the past two weeks, giving back the gains it accrued during the previous reading. The ESI dropped 0.4 points, from 48.3 to 47.9, matching the consumer confidence level registered during last month’s December 15 reading. While consumer confidence currently remains above its six-month average of 47.86, 2016’s first ESI reading snaps the trend of increasing consumer confidence experienced throughout December. However, this decline in consumer confidence pales in comparison to the declines the stock market has experienced thus far in 2016. A global sell-off has pushed the Dow Jones Industrial Average down more than 1,000 points, from 17,425.03 to 16,398.57, since December 31, 2015.

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Consumer confidence in the labor market, the broader U.S. economy, and in making a major purchase all suffered declines during this reading, while confidence in personal finances and the housing market improved. Sentiment regarding the broader U.S. economy experienced the largest decrease, dropping 2.1 points, from 41.3 to 39.2, this reading. Confidence in making a major purchase fell 1.6 points to 48.0, while confidence in the labor market fell 0.2 points to 37.3. Confidence in the housing market received a significant boost, rising 2.0 points, from 52.3 to 54.3, while consumer confidence in personal finances improved 0.2 points to 60.7. Once again, consumers remained most confident in their personal finances and least confident in the labor market.

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The three-day rolling average experienced a tumultuous ride this reading. After increasing during the beginning of the reading, the rolling average fell off significantly with the start of the new year before bottoming out at 45.5 on 1/11. The rolling average’s movement thus far in 2016 has mirrored trends in the stock market, with declines in the three-day average occurring during the market slide.

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The next release of the ESI will be January 26.

About the Index

The HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (“ESI”) is a “living” index that measures U.S. adults’ expectations for the economy going forward, as well as their feelings about current conditions for major purchases. The primary goal of the Index is to accurately measure movements in overall national economic sentiment, and to provide a more sophisticated alternative to existing economic sentiment indices. Unlike other prominent indices that release consumer sentiment estimates infrequently, the HPS-CivicScience Index is updated in real time as responses are collected continuously every hour, every day. Large-scale cross-tabulation of survey responses and consumer attributes enable more granular analyses than are currently possible through prevailing measures.

For a more detailed overview of the Index and the underlying methodology, please request a white paper.

About Hamilton Place Strategies (HPS)

Hamilton Place Strategies is a policy, advocacy, and communications consulting firm with a focus and expertise at the intersection of government, business, and media.

For more information, visit Hamilton Place Strategies by clicking here and follow them on Twitter – @HPSInsight.

About CivicScience

CivicScience, Inc. provides the leading intelligent polling and real-time consumer insights platform, the InsightStore™. Its proprietary platform powers the world’s opinions and quickly gets that data to the decision makers who care. Every day, CivicScience polls ask millions of people questions related to thousands of topics, while its powerful data science and big data technology analyzes current consumer opinions, discovers trends as they start, and accurately predicts future behaviors and market outcomes. CivicScience polls run on hundreds of premier websites, in addition to its own public polling site at CivicScience’s InsightStore™ is used by leading enterprises in marketing research, advertising, media, financial services, and political polling. For more information, visit CivicScience by clicking here and follow them on Twitter – @CivicScience.