The Consumer Confidence Index rose in November to 49.5 (1985=100) compared with 48.7 in October, the Conference Board reported yesterday. The Present Situation Index remained relatively unchanged, declining to 21 in November from 21.1 in October and the Expectations Index increased to 68.5 from 67 last month, according to the report.
“Consumers’ assessment of present-day conditions was virtually unchanged and remains at levels not seen in 26 years,” said Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center.  “The moderate improvement in the short-term outlook was the result of a decrease in the percent of consumers expecting business and labor market conditions to worsen.  Consumers also remain quite pessimistic about their future earnings, a sentiment that will likely constrain spending during the holidays.”
Consumers’ assessment of current conditions also was nearly unchanged in November, with those claiming business conditions are “bad” decreasing to 45.7 percent in November from 46.7 percent the previous month, while those claiming conditions are “good” increased to 8.1 percent in November compared with 7.8 percent in October. Consumers’ appraisal of the job market also was slightly less favorable, and their short-term outlook also was slightly more pessimistic, according to the report.

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