Some rare good news this week on the economic front: Consumer comfort – which a month ago was sucking wind – has recorded some nice gains over the last month.
Bloomberg’s Consumer Comfort Index (CCI) – which measures consumer comfort on a scale of zero to 100 – currently stands at 45.2. That’s up a full five points from last month, and while this week’s growth has cooled a bit the index is just 2.7 points off of its post-recession high – achieved in early April of this year.
Here’s a look at the trend line …
And here are its three subindices (which measure consumers’ views on their personal finances, the national economy, and the current buying climate) …
Is this uptick sustainable? We sure hope so … although there are a host of national and global metrics out there indicating it isn’t.
As much as we’d like to be bearish on the future of the U.S. economy (i.e. believe all the “rainbows and unicorns” propaganda), the truth is massive underemployment, stagnant wages and major global economic headwinds leave little room for optimism.
Still, we welcome these numbers … even if they didn’t translate into strong retail sales last month.