Industry News

Consumer confidence falls sharply

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Consumer confidence dropped significantly in February on expectations that business conditions and job prospects will continue to worsen over the next six months, The Conference Board reported today. The Consumer Confidence Index this month fell to 75 from a reading of 87.3 in January, with double-digit declines seen in the present situation and expectations indices that make up the index. "The Consumer Confidence Index continues losing ground and, with the exception of the Iraqi War in 2003, is now at its lowest level in nearly 15 years (Nov. 1993, 71.9)," Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center, said in a statement. "The weakening in consumers' assessment of current conditions, fueled by a combination of less favorable business conditions and a sharp rise in the number of consumers saying jobs are hard to get, suggests that the pace of growth in early 2008 has slowed even further. "Consumers' expectations have also deteriorated significantl...