consumerconfidence

U.S. Gasoline Prices Are Now Cheaper Than a Year Ago

After dropping for most of the month, gas prices are now lower in much of the U.S. than they were a year ago, possibly part of a larger decline in that could lift consumer confidence ahead of the summer driving season.

U.S. Consumer Confidence Roughly Flat in March

Americans are focusing on the good amid the latest barrage of conflicting economic news. The Consumer Confidence Index barely budged in March after hitting its highest level since before the financial crisis began in February.

Consumer Confidence Up in February

A private research group says that consumer confidence in February rose dramatically from last month to the highest level since a year ago when the U.S. economy's outlook started to look brighter before souring again. The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index now stands at 70.8, up from a revised 61.5 in January, helped by consumers' improving assessment of the job market. Analysts had expected a reading of 63. The February reading marks the highest level since February 2011 when it was 72.0.

Consumer Confidence Index Surges in December

Americans are gaining faith that the economy is on the upswing. The monthly Consumer Confidence Index surged to the highest level since April and is approaching a post-recession peak. The New York-based Conference Board said Tuesday that its Consumer Confidence Index rose almost 10 points to 64.5, up from a revised 55.2 in November.

Economy Ends 2011 Looking Up, Surprisingly

The economy is ending 2011 on a roll. The job market is healthier. Americans are spending lustily on holiday gifts. A long-awaited turnaround for the depressed housing industry may be under way. Gas is cheaper. Factories are busier. Stocks are higher.

Americans in November More Confident About Economy

Americans' confidence in the economy in November bounced back to its highest level since July, the latest sign that consumers are beginning to feel more cheerful about spending during the holiday shopping season. The Conference Board, a private research firm, says Tuesday that its Consumer Confidence Index rose 15 points to 56.0, the biggest jump since the 59.2 reading in July.

Hints of Recovery? J.P. Morgan Tells Firms to Prepare

Unemployment remains high. The housing crisis has chipped away at consumer confidence. Commodities costs have pushed prices upward. Yet there are signs the economic picture might be getting better for some Americans -- which means businesses could start working harder to get us to start spending again.

The 4 Emotional Traps Making Us Miserable

Americans are unhappy. Consumer confidence is at lowest level in over 2 years, and the "misery index" is at a 28-year high. But there's a lot more to our distress than the numbers. The real source of our current unhappiness lies in a set of deeper emotional triggers -- triggers that we can change.

Just in Time for the Holidays, a Bad Economic Mood

Americans say they feel worse about the economy than they have since the depths of the Great Recession. And it's a bad time for a bad mood because households are starting to make their holiday budgets. It might not be all doom and gloom, though. Sometimes what people say about the economy and how they behave are two different things.

Holiday Spending Will Rise Despite Fewer Customers

Consumers will spend a bit more this holiday shopping season, but there will be fewer of them in stores, predicts research firm ShopperTrak. It forecasts that national retail sales will rise 3% during November and December compared to the year before, but foot traffic will fall 2.2%.

Low Consumer Confidence Kills Economy

One of several metrics economists use to gauge the health of the economy is the Consumer Confidence Index. But in bleak times, like our ongoing post-recession struggle, the CCI can become a self-fulfilling prophecy of doom. We need to break free from this downward spiral; here are 4 ways for consumers to play the recession (and hopefully lift their spirits).

Why Some Consumers Remain Confident

U.S. economic confidence fell slightly in the first half of this year compared to the same period last year. But consumers in the District of Columbia and states such as Maryland, Virginia, Utah and Massachusetts kept their confidence up. Here's why.

July Retail Sales Jump, but August Uncertain

Retail sales were up in July, a rare bright spot among dim economic indicators. But consumers and investors being the way they are, the question on everyone's mind immediately becomes: Can August keep up the pace? We found out what the experts are saying.

Before Market Slide, Americans Were Losing Confidence

Even before the latest stock-market plunge, U.S. consumer confidence was already sliding downward, according to a Fannie Mae survey released Monday. Some 70% of respondents say the economy is heading in the wrong direction.

U.S. Consumers: Done Spending, or Ready to Restart?

Consumer sentiment is at its lowest level in two years, while the so-called "Misery Index" stands at a three decade-high. And it's true: Americans aren't spending as robustly as they once were. But when you look at the numbers, it becomes clear that U.S. consumers aren't down for the count just yet.

Vacations at Risk for 45% of Americans

A growing inclination among Americans to change their vacation plans shows that the slowing economy is taking a toll on consumer confidence. A new survey found that 45% of workers who have taken or plan to take a vacation this summer "would reduce or cancel their plans to save money if the economy continues its volatility."

The Financial Landscape: Dollar Losing Favor, Economy Losing Steam

The long term isn't looking good for the greenback: Central bank managers don't see it keeping its status as the world's reserve currency. The short term's not looking so hot for the U.S. economy either: Housing prices are down another 4% year over year, and confidence is falling.