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July Results.

The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index, which had dropped sharply in June, rebounded in July. The Index now stands at 141.7 (1985=100), up from 139.2. The Present Situation Index jumped from 180.1 to 185.9, while the Expectations Index improved modestly, from 111.9 to 112.2.

The Consumer Confidence Survey is based on a representative sample of 5,000 U.S. households. The monthly survey is conducted for The Conference Board by NFO Research, Inc., an NFO Worldwide Company and member of The Interpublic Group of Companies (NYSE: IPG).

In July, consumers' assessment of current conditions was more upbeat than in June. The percentage of respondents that felt business conditions were "good" rose to 44.9 percent from 43.7 percent, while those rating conditions as "bad" declined to 7.4 percent from 9.4 percent. Consumers claiming jobs were "hard to get" dropped to 9.9 percent from 11.2 percent in June.

Consumers' short-term outlook in July was more optimistic than in June. Although the percentage of respondents expecting an improvement in business conditions over the next six months fell to 16.5 percent from 18.3 percent in the previous survey, the proportion anticipating conditions to worsen held steady at 6.3 percent. The job outlook was also mixed. The percentage of consumers expecting more jobs to become available in the coming months declined to 17.9 percent from 18.2 percent in June. Those expecting fewer jobs to become available, however, declined to 10.5 percent from 11.6 percent. Income prospects were less optimistic than in the prior survey. Now, only 24.9 percent of respondents anticipate an increase in their income, down from 25.4 percent in June.

Consumer Confidence readings continue to indicate that the overall economy is still quite strong. Consumers not only rate current conditions as very favorable, but their short-term outlook suggests we will continue to experience more of the same -- low unemployment, accompanied by minimal inflationary pressures.
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Author:Franco, Lynn
Publication:Consumer Confidence Survey
Article Type:Statistical Data Included
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 1, 2000
Words:333
Previous Article:June Results.
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