June 29, 2013 in Business

Consumers still feeling hopeful

Jim Puzzanghera Los Angeles Times
 

WASHINGTON – Consumer confidence dipped this month after reaching a five-year high in May, but remained strong, according to a private reading released Friday.

The consumer sentiment index from Thompson Reuters and the University of Michigan dropped to 84.1 in June from 84.5 last month. But the final June reading was an improvement over the preliminary figure of 82.7 released two weeks ago.

“Consumers now believe the recovery has achieved an upward momentum that will not be easily reversed,” said Richard Curtin, the survey’s chief economist.

The survey’s findings were in line with the other leading private barometer, from the Conference Board, released Tuesday. That showed consumer confidence in June at its highest since January 2008.

Curtin said consumers had adjusted to the slower pace of recovery, particularly in the jobs market, and their higher confidence sprang from increased wealth generated by rising housing and stock prices.

“To be sure, few consumers expect the economy to post robust gains or think the unemployment rate will drastically shrink during the year ahead,” he said. “Nonetheless, consumers anticipate continued slow economic progress.”

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