Economic Sentiment Among Consumers Dips In First Half Of July

Consumer confidence dipped slightly over the past two weeks, according to the HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (ESI). The 0.1 point decline brings the index to 45.8 and marks yet another new low for 2016. The current reading’s drop also pushes the 2016 average to 46.9, down from 47.0.

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Movement among the ESI’s five indicators varied, with confidence in the broader US economy, labor market, and housing market on the decline, while consumer sentiment regarding making a major purchase and personal finances increased during the two week period. Confidence in the US economy fell the most, decreasing 1.4 points to 35.7. Economic sentiment regarding the labor market and the housing market also declined, from 34.6 to 33.6, and from 54.3 to 53.9, respectively. Consumers were upbeat with respect to making a major purchase and their personal finances; confidence in making a major purchase increased 1.8 points to 48.3, while confidence in personal finances rose 0.8 points to 57.5.

Interestingly, looking back over the past year, confidence in making a major purchase and in the housing market have remained comparatively unchanged with 0.1 and 0.4 point declines, respectively. Meanwhile, consumer sentiment regarding personal finances has fallen just 1.4 points to 57.5, but remains the indicator in which consumers are most confident. Consumers have been much more bearish in regard to the broader US economy and the labor market, however. Confidence in the US economy has dropped 5.4 points, from 41.1 to 35.7, while confidence in the labor market has fallen 5.1 points, from 38.7 to 33.6 in the past year, maintaining its position as the indicator in which consumers are least confident.

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The ESI’s three-day rolling average remained fairly stable, hovering between 44.0 and 47.1 during the two week period. The moving average started at its trough of 44.0 on the first day of the reading, June 29, and reached its peak of 47.1 midway through the two-week period on July 5. The rolling average ultimately settled at 46.0 on July 12, the last day of the reading.

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The next release of the ESI will be July 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.