Consumer sentiment was essentially unchanged this month, inching up less than two index points from March. Sentiment is now about 3% below a year ago but 27% above the all-time low from last June. The Current Economic Conditions Index increased 2.3 from the previous month to 66.3 and is 0.8 points below the April 2022 index. The Consumer Expectations Index increased by 0.9 points to 60.3 and is 2.2 points lower from a year ago.
“Consumer sentiment was essentially unchanged this month, inching up less than two index points from March. Sentiment is now about 3% below a year ago but 27% above the all-time low from last June. Rising sentiment for lower-income consumers was offset by declines among those with higher incomes. While consumers have noted the easing of inflation among durable goods and cars, they still expect high inflation to persist, at least in the short run. On net, consumers did not perceive material changes in the economic environment in April.”.
“Year-ahead inflation expectations rose from 3.6% in March to 4.6% in April. These expectations have been seesawing for four consecutive months, alternating between increases and decreases. Uncertainty over short-run inflation expectations continues to be notably elevated, indicating that the recent volatility in expected year-ahead inflation is likely to continue. The bumpiness in inflation expectations is limited to the short run as long-run inflation expectations remained remarkably stable. They came in at 2.9% for the fifth consecutive month and have stayed within the narrow 2.9-3.1% range for 20 of the last 21 months.”. Said Surveys of Consumers Director Joanne Hsu.
Read the University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers release.