Labor Market Confidence Rises To 12-Month High As ESI Continues To Climb

With a 0.7 point increase from two weeks ago, consumer confidence rose for the fourth consecutive reading, according to the latest data from the HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (ESI). At 47.4, the ESI two-week average is at its highest level since June 2013. The recent rise tracks improvements in the U.S. job market, which saw increased job gains in February and March. In fact, within the ESI components, labor market confidence jumped 1.4 points and reached a 12-month high.

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During the two-week period, the three-day rolling average fluctuated between 46.8 and 48.3, with the final reading for the two-week period coming in at 48.0. The average saw a minor dip in early April, but quickly rebounded.

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The main drivers behind the ESI’s continued growth were confidence in the labor market, which rose to 37.3, and confidence in making a major purchase, which also reached its highest reading in more than a year. Confidence in making a major purchase jumped 2.6 points and while labor market confidence remains a drag on the overall index, its current reading is the closest it’s been to other components in a year.

Consumers’ confidence in purchasing a new home also saw a spike over the past two-weeks, rising 2.0 points and now has the reading among all components of the ESI. However, at 56.8, it remains below its level at this time last year. Consumers’ outlook on the U.S. economy and outlook on their personal finances dipped slightly, but not enough to undo the overall positive picture.

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Below are all five questions included in the index:

  • Over the next six months, do you expect your personal financial situation to get better, stay the same, or get worse?
  • Given the current state of your local market, is now a good or bad time to purchase a new home?
  • Given the current state of the economy, is now a good time or a bad time to make a major purchase like a new car or home improvements?
  • Looking ahead six months, do you think the U.S. economy will get better, stay the same, or get worse?
  • Over the next six months, do you think it will become easier or more difficult to find a new job?

The next release of the ESI will be Tuesday, April 22nd.

About the Index

The HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (“ESI”) 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.

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.

About CivicScience

CivicScience is a next-generation polling and data mining company. The company partners with hundreds of premier websites to survey millions of people every week. Proprietary technology then rapidly analyzes consumer opinion, discovers trends in real-time, and accurately predicts market outcomes. CivicScience is used by leading enterprises in an array of industries including marketing research, advertising, digital media, financial services, and political polling.