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Economy in Brief

U.S. Consumer Sentiment Down on Reduced Expectations
by Tom Moeller August 13, 2004

The University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment index for mid-August fell unexpectedly to 94.0 from 96.7 in July. Consensus expectations had been for a rise to 98.0.

During the last ten years there has been a 75% correlation between the level of consumer sentiment and the y/y change in real PCE.

The expectations sub-index fell to 84.7, the lowest level since May. The index of current economic conditions rose to 108.4, its level since January.

The University of Michigan survey is not seasonally adjusted.The mid-month survey is based on telephone interviews with 250 households nationwide on personal finances and business and buying conditions. The survey is expanded to a total of 500 interviews at month end.

University of Michigan Mid-Aug July Y/Y 2003 2002 2001
Consumer Sentiment 94.0 96.7 5.3% 87.6 89.6 89.2
   Current Conditions 108.4 105.2 8.7% 97.2 97.5 100.1
   Consumer Expectations 84.7 91.2 2.7% 81.4 84.6 82.3
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