Consumer Confidence Accelerates in February

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index increased 6.5 points to 130.8 in February. Last month’s index was downwardly revised from 125.4 to 124.3. The Present Situation Index increased 5.7 points to 162.4 after falling 2.2 points last month. The Expectations Index surged 5.7 points to 109.7.

“Consumer confidence improved to its highest level since 2000 (Nov. 2000, 132.6) after a modest increase in January,” said Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board. “Consumers’ assessment of current conditions was more favorable this month, with the labor force the main driver. Despite the recent stock market volatility, consumers expressed greater optimism about short-term prospects for business and labor market conditions, as well as their financial prospects.

Consumers’ labor market outlook also improved in February. The percentage of consumers expecting more jobs in the coming months rose 2.9 points to 21.6%, while the share of those anticipating fewer jobs fell from 12.5% to 11.9%. Income expectations increased, as 23.8% of consumers expected their incomes to increase in coming months, up from 20.6% in January. However, the proportion expecting a decline rose from 7.9% to 8.6%.

Read the Conference Board release.