WASHINGTON (2/25/15)--Consumer confidence took a step back in February, as the Conference Board Consumer Confidence index slipped by 7.4 points during the month to a reading of 96.4 (Economy.com Feb. 24).
The stumble knocked the index well below the 103.8 recorded in January, a seven-year high, according to Moody's.
"More pessimism over the future fueled the majority of the decline, which was more than forecast, but weaker assessments of current conditions also contributed," said Nate Kelley, Moody's analyst (Economy.com). "Still, the index has been choppy over the past six months or so, and the three-month moving average is 97.8, the highest since July 2007."
The present situation subindex dropped by 3.7 points to 110.2 in February, and the future conditions subcomponent fell by nearly 10 points to 87.2.
Fewer shoppers said business conditions were good during the month--26% after 28.2% in January--though the share that said conditions were bad also fell to 17% from 17.3%.
Further, 57% of respondents said business conditions were normal, a slight improvement over last month's reading.
Other key findings from the report: