MICHIGAN (dpa-AFX) – In the US, consumer confidence fell to its lowest level in over ten years in January. The index for consumer sentiment collected by the University of Michigan fell compared to the previous month by 1.8 points to 68.8 points, as the university announced on Friday after an initial estimate. Economists had expected a decrease to 70.0 points on average. The indicator was last even lower in November 2011.
The assessment of the current situation and the future expectations of the consumers surveyed deteriorated. The high rate of inflation is putting a strain on consumer sentiment. In addition, there is the rapid spread of the omicron variant of the coronavirus.
According to the survey, consumers expect inflation to rise by 4.9 percent in the next year. Over the next five to ten years, they expect an annual rate of 3.1 percent. Both values are slightly above their previous month’s value. The US Federal Reserve is aiming for a rate of two percent. In December the inflation rate rose to 7.0 percent.
The University of Michigan indicator is a measure of the purchasing behavior of American consumers. It is based on a telephone survey of around 500 households. The financial and economic assessment of the situation as well as the corresponding expectations are queried./jsl/he