Industry News

Consumer confidence improves on lower gas prices

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Consumer confidence ended a three-month plunge in November with substantial improvements from previous months due to declines in gas prices, according to the University of Michigan's Survey of Consumers. "The recent rise in consumer confidence was due to declines in gas prices," according to Although gas prices have fallen to their lowest level since June, the November gain reversed just one-third of the losses recorded in the prior three months. "The recent gain in confidence will support somewhat improved holiday sales, with current dollar retail sales gains of about 5 1/2 percent over last year," said Richard Curtin, director of the University of Michigan's Surveys of Consumers. The Index of Consumer Sentiment was 81.6 in the November 2005 survey, up from 74.2 in October, but still below the 96.5 recorded in July and the 92.8 recorded in November 2004. The Index of Consumer Expectations, a closely watched component of the Index of Leading Economic Indicators, was 69.6 in th...