Skip to main content
Advertising

Originally published June 27, 2014 at 10:52 AM | Page modified June 28, 2014 at 2:07 AM

  • Share:
             
  • Comments (0)
  • Print

Steady job growth boosts US consumer confidence

Strong job growth lifted U.S. consumer confidence this month, as Americans looked past the economy's dismal first quarter performance.


AP Economics Writer

advertising

WASHINGTON —

Strong job growth lifted U.S. consumer confidence this month, as Americans looked past the economy's dismal first quarter performance.

The University of Michigan said Friday that its index of consumer sentiment rose slightly to 82.5 in June from 81.9 in May. That is still below April's reading of 84.1, which had been the highest in almost a year.

Confidence "has remained largely unchanged for the past six months," said Richard Curtin, an economist at the University of Michigan and director of the survey. "This was remarkable" given that the economy shrank in the first quarter.

Still, the survey was mostly conducted when the government had estimated that the economy contracted at a 1 percent annual rate in the first quarter. On Wednesday, that estimate was revised much lower, to show a contraction of 2.9 percent.

And so far, steady confidence hasn't yet translated into more spending. Consumer spending rose just 0.2 percent in May after a flat reading in April. Weaker spending suggests growth won't rebound as strongly as many economists had hoped. Some marked down their forecasts for growth in the second quarter, to roughly 2.5 percent from 3 percent.

Still, there were other positive signs in the University of Michigan's report. Steady hiring is improving Americans' finances, the survey found. Forty percent of respondents said their finances had improved in June, the most in seven years.

And more Americans say it is a good time to sell a home, which can help fuel sales as most people need to sell their home before buying a new one. For the first time in eight years, half of all homeowners said sales conditions were positive.



Free 4-week trial, then $99 a year for unlimited seattletimes.com access. Try it now!

Also in Business & Technology

News where, when and how you want it

Email Icon

Free 4-week trial, then $99 a year.

Free 4-week trial, then $99 a year.

Unlimited seattletimes.com access. Try it now.

Advertising

Advertising


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►