Consumer Confidence Plummets In December; Hits Two-Year Low

The HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (ESI) continued to dive over the past two weeks, dropping 2.4 points to 48.6. This is the lowest reading since November 15, 2016.

The ESI has now fallen 4.6 points in December and sits 4.4 points below the 2018 average and 7 points off the 2018 peak. The drop in consumer confidence this month coincides with a nearly 15 percent decline in the S&P 500.

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Confidence fell across all five components of the ESI. Of note, confidence in making a major purchase and finding a new job fell more than 4 points. Confidence in the U.S. economy fell another 2.7 points after a 3.5 drop in the previous two weeks.

Each of these three components are now roughly 6 points below their 2018 averages. Moreover, confidence in the U.S. economy is at levels not seen since October 2016.

Confidence in buying a new home and in personal finances also dipped, but remain less than 2 points off their 2018 averages.

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The three-day moving average consistently declined in the first half of December. During the past two weeks, it plateaued at 49 only to then fall 2.5 points over the weekend through December 25th.

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The next release of the ESI will be on Tuesday, January 8, 2019.

About the Index

The HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (“ESI”) is a “living” index that measures U.S. adults’ expectations for the economy going forward, as well as their feelings about current conditions for major purchases. The primary goal of the Index is to accurately measure movements in overall national economic sentiment, and to provide a more sophisticated alternative to existing economic sentiment indices. Unlike other prominent indices that release consumer sentiment estimates infrequently, the HPS-CivicScience Index is updated in real time as responses are collected continuously every hour, every day. Large-scale cross-tabulation of survey responses and consumer attributes enable more granular analyses than are currently possible through prevailing measures.

For a more detailed overview of the Index and the underlying methodology, please request a white paper.

About Hamilton Place Strategies (HPS)

Hamilton Place Strategies (HPS) is an analytical public affairs consulting firm with offices in Washington, D.C. and San Francisco. We integrate substantive analysis with communications and believe a deep understanding of business and economics leads to more effective public engagement and better outcomes for our clients.

For more information, visit Hamilton Place Strategies by clicking here and follow them on Twitter – @HPSInsight.

About CivicScience

CivicScience, Inc. provides the leading intelligent polling and real-time consumer insights platform, the InsightStore™. Its proprietary platform powers the world’s opinions and quickly gets that data to the decision makers who care. Every day, CivicScience polls ask millions of people questions related to thousands of topics, while its powerful data science and big data technology analyzes current consumer opinions, discovers trends as they start, and accurately predicts future behaviors and market outcomes. CivicScience polls run on hundreds of premier websites, in addition to its own public polling site at CivicScience’s InsightStore™ is used by leading enterprises in marketing research, advertising, media, financial services, and political polling. For more information, visit CivicScience by clicking here and follow them on Twitter – @CivicScience.