Consumer Confidence Up: As Goes Arizona, So Goes the Nation.
Consumer confidence kept improving in August, posting a 122.9 reading in the latest Consumer Confidence Index® from The Conference Board. The Expectations reading of the Index rose to 104.0, while the Present Situation reading rose to 151.2. July’s reading was 120.0.
As of September 1, 2017, the Economic and Business Research Center (EBRC) in the University of Arizona’s Eller College of Management, reports “Arizona continues to add jobs, income, and residents at a faster pace than the nation. However, gains are coming at a slow pace compared to the state’s own history. Demographics (aging of the baby boom generation) is likely playing a role here, and this will continue to be an issue in the long run.”
Across the U.S. “Consumer confidence increased in August following a moderate improvement in July,” said Lynn Franco, director of Economic Indicators in a statement at The Conference Board. “Consumers’ more buoyant assessment of present-day conditions was the primary driver of the boost in confidence, with the Present Situation Index continuing to hover at a 16-year high. Consumers’ short-term expectations were relatively flat, though still optimistic, suggesting that they do not anticipate an acceleration in the pace of economic activity in the months ahead.”
In 2015, the EBRC ranked Arizona income and quality of life as 47th in the nation, however the report by necessity, took into consideration Arizona’s overwhelming number of sparsely populated and outlying rural areas. Over 61% of Arizona’s total population resides in Maricopa County, which includes and surrounds the Greater Phoenix Metro region. Phoenix on its own, enjoys the distinction of being one the nations fastest growing cities and one of the most diverse. And the Southeast Valley city of Gilbert was recently ranked #1 Most Prosperous City in the U.S. in its size category.
The EBRC posted this graph citing statistics from Brookings Economic Inclusion Rankings.
The of consumers who believe business conditions are “good,” as defined by the Index, increased from 32.5 percent in July to 34.5 percent in August; the percentage of those who believe business conditions are “bad” decreased from 13.5 percent in July to 13.1 percent in August. The percentage of those who expect business conditions to improve decreased from 22.4 percent in July to 19.6 percent in August; the percentage of those who expect business conditions to worsen decreased from 8.4 percent in July to 7.3 percent in August.
The percentage of consumers who believe jobs are “plentiful” increased from 33.2 percent in July to 35.4 percent in August, according to the Index; the percentage of those who believe jobs are “hard to get” decreased from 18.7 percent in July to 17.3 percent in August. The percentage of those who expect more jobs in the coming months decreased from 18.5 percent in July to 17.1 percent in August; the percentage of those who expect less jobs in the coming months decreased from 13.2 percent in July to 13.0 percent in August.
The percentage of consumers who expect higher incomes increased from 20.0 percent in July to 20.9 percent in August; the percentage of those who expect a decrease increased from 9.5 percent in July to 7.8 percent in August.
The latest research and analysis on real estate hot spots and economic trends from industry insiders are revealed at the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce and Cox Communication’s annual Economic Outlook event. Well worth the watch, Elliott Pollack, CEO, Elliott D. Pollack & Company, Jim Huntzinger, Executive VP & Chief Investment Officer, BOK Financial, and Andrew Walker, Economics Correspondent, BBC World Service, discuss Phoenix Metro Region and Arizona’s economic outlook in a series of enlightening videos available on the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce website here.
Source: The Conference Board Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2017. All rights reserved.
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