“The holidays are just around the corner and consumers are ready to shop,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “Confidence is near an all-time high, unemployment is the lowest we’ve seen in decades and take-home wages are up. All of that is reflected in consumers’ buying plans.”
CONSUMER CONFIDENCE SOARS TO 18-YEAR HIGH
The carefully watched Conference Board consumer confidence index increased again in October, following a modest improvement in September. IT now stands at its highest level in 18 years.
The Consumer Board’s consumer confidence index stood at 137.9 in October, up from 135.3 in September. The Present Situation Index – based on consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions – improved from 169.4 in September to 172.8 in October, while the Expectations Index – based on consumers’ short-term outlook for income, business and labor market conditions – increased from 112.5 in September to 114.6 in October.
Gross domestic product grew at the fastest pace in nearly four years in the second quarter and continued to grow at a solid 3.5 percent annual rate from July through September.
The American unemployment rate is 3.7 percent, its lowest level since 1969.