Consumer confidence deteriorated further in April as weak business and job conditions and rising food and gas prices force Americans to tighten their spending, The Conference Board reported today.

The Consumer Confidence Index fell to 62.3 this month from a reading of 65.9 in March, with the Present Situation Index diving 10 points, from 90.6 to 80.7.

Consumer confidence deteriorated further in April as weak business and job conditions and rising food and gas prices force Americans to tighten their spending, The Conference Board reported today.

The Consumer Confidence Index fell to 62.3 this month from a reading of 65.9 in March, with the Present Situation Index diving 10 points, from 90.6 to 80.7.

"This month’s decline in consumer confidence was the result of yet another sharp decline in the Present Situation Index," Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center, said in a statement. "This continued weakening suggests that not only has the feeble level of growth in the first quarter spilled over into the second quarter, but that economic conditions may have slowed even further. And, not only are lackluster business and job conditions eroding confidence, but rising gasoline prices are undoubtedly heightening concerns. Consumers’ inflation expectations continue to rise and this measure now matches the all-time high reached in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

"The percentage of respondents intending to take a vacation over the next six months has fallen to a 30-year low, another sign of consumers turning more cost-conscious," Franco said. "Looking ahead, consumers’ outlook for the economy, the job market and their income prospects remains quite pessimistic and little changed from last month. Or, in other words, the glass remains half empty."

The survey found that more consumers (26.7 percent) believe current business conditions are "bad," up from 25.5 percent in March, while those claiming conditions are "good" was mostly flat at 15.3 percent versus 15.6 percent last month.

The percentage of consumers saying jobs are "hard to get" rose to 27.9 percent in April from 24.5 percent in March, while those claiming jobs are "plentiful" declined to 16.6 percent from 19.2 percent.

Consumers expecting business conditions to worsen over the next six months increased to 27 percent from last month’s 26 percent, while those anticipating business conditions to improve increased to 10.1 percent from 8.6 percent in March.

The outlook for the labor market was also mixed, but still pessimistic. Those expecting fewer jobs in the months ahead increased to 32.8 percent from 29.3 percent, while those anticipating more jobs increased to 9 percent from 8 percent. The proportion of consumers expecting their incomes to increase declined to 15.1 percent from 16.1 percent.

The Consumer Confidence Survey is based on a representative sample of 5,000 U.S. households.

***

What’s your opinion? Leave your comments below or send a letter to the editor.

Show Comments Hide Comments

Comments

Sign up for Inman’s Morning Headlines
What you need to know to start your day with all the latest industry developments
By submitting your email address, you agree to receive marketing emails from Inman.
Success!
Thank you for subscribing to Morning Headlines.
Back to top
Black Friday starts now! We've got great deals on Inman Connect New York in-person and virtual tickets. Register now×
Cyber Week Sale: Get 1 year of Inman Select for $75.SUBSCRIBE×
Log in
If you created your account with Google or Facebook
Don't have an account?
Forgot your password?
No Problem

Simply enter the email address you used to create your account and click "Reset Password". You will receive additional instructions via email.

Forgot your username? If so please contact customer support at (510) 658-9252

Password Reset Confirmation

Password Reset Instructions have been sent to

Subscribe to The Weekender
Get the week's leading headlines delivered straight to your inbox.
Top headlines from around the real estate industry. Breaking news as it happens.
15 stories covering tech, special reports, video and opinion.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
It looks like you’re already a Select Member!
To subscribe to exclusive newsletters, visit your email preferences in the account settings.
Up-to-the-minute news and interviews in your inbox, ticket discounts for Inman events and more
1-Step CheckoutPay with a credit card
By continuing, you agree to Inman’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

You will be charged . Your subscription will automatically renew for on . For more details on our payment terms and how to cancel, click here.

Interested in a group subscription?
Finish setting up your subscription