U.S. Consumer Comfort Improves on More Upbeat Views of Economy

(Bloomberg) -- A measure of sentiment among Americans climbed to a five-week high as views on the economy posted the largest gain since July.

The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index rose to 60.8 from 60.3 in the week ended April 20, according to a report Thursday. A gauge of views on personal finances also increased to the best level in five weeks while the measure of the buying climate decreased.

Key Insights

  • The third-straight increase shows confidence among Americans is strengthening as a rising stock market, sustained wage gains and the Federal Reserve’s signals it will keep interest rates on hold support sentiment. Recent data suggest a rosier picture of the economy amid reports earlier this month that showed U.S. companies added more jobs than forecast in March and retail sales saw their biggest jump since 2017.
  • At the same time, fears of slowing growth in the U.S. and abroad along with rising gasoline prices may be limiting further gains for the confidence indicator.

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  • The comfort level among men rose to the highest level since November.
  • Confidence for those earning $50,000 to $75,000 reached the best level since August.
  • Comfort measures were split among the four regions, with readings of sentiment decreasing in the Northeast and West and increasing in the Midwest and South.

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