April 25, 2014

Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan: Consumer Confidence Improves

Consumer confidence has remained largely unchanged in the past three months despite the hard winter as well as a severe drought.

ANN ARBOR - Consumer confidence has rebounded to near its highest level since 2007. The April level of con-sumer confidence was just one index-point below the post recession peak. The recent gain was due to much more positive assessment of consumers’ current financial situa-tion as well as renewed optimism about the outlook for the national economy during the year ahead. Importantly, consumers were slightly more optimistic about future job gains, although most consumers expect only minor improvements in the national unemployment rate during the year ahead. The main attraction of home buying conditions has shifted in the past few months toward a greater reliance on low mortgage rates and less emphasis on low prices. This has made the continued expansion of home purchases more responsive to changes in the availability of mortgage credit to potential home buyers.

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