The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, which declined in October, increased significantly in November. The Index now stands at 107.1 (1985=100), up from 100.8 in October. The Present Situation Index increased from 123.1 to 130.3, while the Expectations Index improved from 86.0 last month to 91.7.
Consumers’ assessment of current conditions improved in November. The percentage saying business conditions are “good” improved from 26.5 percent to 29.2 percent, while those saying business conditions are “bad” fell from 17.3 percent to 14.8 percent. Consumers’ appraisal of the labor market was moderately more positive than last month. The percentage of consumers stating jobs are “plentiful” increased from 25.3 percent to 26.9 percent, while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” was unchanged at 21.7 percent.
Consumers’ short-term outlook, on balance, was more optimistic in November. The percentage of consumers expecting business conditions to improve over the next six months fell from 16.4 percent to 15.3 percent; however those expecting business conditions to worsen also decreased, from 11.8 percent to 10.0 percent. Consumers’ outlook for the labor market was likewise somewhat mixed.