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U.S. Consumer Sentiment Plunges To Lowest Level Since Trump's Election

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Consumer sentiment in the U.S. has seen a substantial deterioration in the month of January, according to a report released by the University of Michigan on Friday.

The preliminary report said the consumer sentiment index plummeted to 90.7 in January from the final December reading of 98.3. Economists had expected the index to dip to 97.0.

With the much steeper than expected drop, the consumer sentiment index tumbled to its lowest level since hitting 87.2 in October of 2016.

"Consumer sentiment declined in early January to its lowest level since Trump was elected," said Surveys of Consumers chief economist Richard Curtin. "The decline was primarily focused on prospects for the domestic economy, with the year-ahead outlook for the national economy judged the worst since mid 2014."

He added, "The loss was due to a host of issues including the partial government shutdown, the impact of tariffs, instabilities in financial markets, the global slowdown, and the lack of clarity about monetary policies."

The report said the current economic conditions index slumped to 110.0 in January from 116.1 in December, while the index of consumer expectations plunged to 78.3 from 87.0.

On the inflation front, one-year inflation expectations came in unchanged at 2.7 percent but five-year inflation expectations ticked up to 2.6 percent in January from 2.5 percent in December.

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