Consumer sentiment in the U.S. has unexpectedly seen a substantial improvement in the month of September, according to a preliminary report released by Thomson Reuters and the University of Michigan on Friday.
The report showed that the consumer sentiment index jumped to 79.2 in September from the final August reading of 74.3. The increase came as a surprise to economists, who had expected the index to edge down to a reading of 73.5.
Jim O'Sullivan, Chief U.S. Economist at High Frequency Economics, said, "The rise in the index, following a 2.0-point gain in August, shows clear resilience."
"Of course, the actual spending numbers have been more sluggish so far--much of the strength in retail sales this morning was the boost to nominal spending from higher gasoline prices," he added.
A significant improvement in consumer expectations contributed to the increase by the headline index, with the consumer expectations index climbing to 73.4 in September from 65.1 in August.
On the other hand, the current economic conditions index edged down to 88.3 in August from 88.7 in July, indicating a slight deterioration in the assessment of current conditions.
The report also showed that one-year inflation expectations edged down to 3.5 percent in September from 3.6 percent in August, while five-year inflation expectations dipped to 2.8 percent from 3.0 percent.
by RTT Staff Writer
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