ANN ARBOR, Mich. (10/19/15)--Consumer confidence rebounded in October to 92.1, a gain of 4.9 points over the final September index report of 87.2, according to the University of Michigan preliminary consumer sentiment index for October.
The October index, which was released Friday, is higher than the 89.5 expected by economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal (Oct. 16), and is more than five points above its October 2014 reading (Economy.com Oct. 16).
September’s report--impacted by financial market volatility, a slowdown in China, and a sluggish job growth in the United States--was the lowest in 11 months, the Journal said.
October’s index was the first increase in sentiment since it peaked at 96.1 in June. The strong rebound indicates consumers feel better about current conditions and have favorable expectations for the economy, said Economy.com.
The survey’s chief economist, Richard Curtain, noted that consumers are adapting their spending to an up-and-down economy. Continued job growth and low inflation contributed to the rebound, he said.
Confidence in current economic conditions rose 5.5 points to 106.7, while consumer expectations for the economy rose 4.5 points to 82.7%, said the report. Inflation expectations experienced a 0.1 point decrease in both 12-month inflation (to 2.7%) and five- to 10-year inflation expectations (2.16%).
Year-over-year household finances increased to 113, up from 111 in September, with more people indicating their household finances are the same and fewer saying finances worsened.
Seventy percent of consumers in the survey said it’s a good time to buy a vehicle, up from 65% last month, and 78% indicated it is a good time to buy a house, up one point from 77% in September.