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US consumer confidence dropped to 106.4, inflation remains top of mind for consumers

US Conference Board Consumer Confidence dropped slightly from 108.6 to 106.4 in May, above expectation of 107.3. Present Situation Index dropped from 152.9 to 149.6. Expectations Index dropped from 79.0 to 77.5.

“Consumer confidence dipped slightly in May, after rising modestly in April,” said Lynn Franco, Senior Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board. “The decline in the Present Situation Index was driven solely by a perceived softening in labor market conditions. By contrast, views of current business conditions—which tend to move ahead of trends in jobs—improved. Overall, the Present Situation Index remains at strong levels, suggesting growth did not contract further in Q2. That said, with the Expectations Index weakening further, consumers also do not foresee the economy picking up steam in the months ahead. They do expect labor market conditions to remain relatively strong, which should continue to support confidence in the short run.”

“Meanwhile, purchasing intentions for cars, homes, major appliances, and more all cooled—likely a reflection of rising interest rates and consumers pivoting from big-ticket items to spending on services. Vacation plans have also softened due to rising prices. Indeed, inflation remains top of mind for consumers, with their inflation expectations in May virtually unchanged from April’s elevated levels. Looking ahead, expect surging prices and additional interest rate hikes to pose continued downside risks to consumer spending this year.”

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