Con­sumer sen­ti­ment up; out­look gauge drops

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution - - BUSINESS -

U.S. con­sumer sen­ti­ment ex­ceeded an­a­lyst es­ti­mates as low un­em­ploy­ment and grow­ing in­comes kept Amer­i­cans in an up­beat mood, though the out­look soured amid concern that the la­bor mar­ket will soften. The Univer­sity of Michi­gan’s pre­lim­i­nary De­cem­ber sen­ti­ment in­dex was un­changed from Novem­ber at 97.5 and com­pares with the me­dian es­ti­mate of 97 in a Bloomberg sur­vey of economists, ac­cord­ing to data re­leased Fri­day. The gauge of cur­rent con­di­tions in­creased to 115.2 from 112.3, while the ex­pec­ta­tions in­dex dipped two points to 86.1, the low­est in a year. Even though the out­look weak­ened, con­fi­dence re­mains fairly solid, with sup­port from strong hir­ing, im­prov­ing wages and cheaper fuel costs. A mea­sure of buy­ing con­di­tions for long-last­ing goods rose six points to 167, the high­est since March.

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