US: Consumers remain pessimistic about current conditions

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After falling to its lowest level since 2011 in August, consumer confidence improved only modestly in early September to 71.0 from 70.3 previously, Wells Fargo analysts explained. According to them, consumers remain pessimistic about current conditions.

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“Consumer sentiment as measured by the University of Michigan suggests that consumers are more depressed today than when the pandemic first struck last year. The preliminary reading on consumer confidence for September showed only a modest improvement to 71.0 in early September, which is still lower than at any time during the pandemic and a worrying indication for the consumer outlook. “

“Despite concerns about higher prices, consumers’ overall view of household finances improved in September, which is particularly encouraging given the expiration of improved unemployment benefits earlier in the month and declining income. general fiscal support “.

“Today’s report is clear: consumers are still more pessimistic than a few months ago, which is consistent with weaker spending. Retail sales were higher than expected in August, but that data largely covers the goods sector and is in nominal dollars, or not adjusted for price changes. We believe households remain in strong financial shape given the savings accumulated over the past year and the increase in net worth among income cohorts, but the rapid rise in consumer prices and the rise in associated case counts. with the virus they are probably affecting spending in the short term. “


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