Consumer Confidence was 55.9, 2.4 pts above forecasts and up from 53.6 in Dec. It’s at the highest since Sept ’08 and the rise was mostly due to an almost 5 pt rise in the Present Situation while Expectations rose by 1.4 pts to the most since Oct ’07. The answers to the job market questions showed improvement. Those that said jobs were Plentiful rose 1.2 pts to the most since Aug ’09 and those that said jobs were Hard To Get fell by .7 pts to the lowest since Sept ’09. Those that plan to buy a home within 6 mo’s rose .1 pt from the lowest level since 1982 in Dec. Those that plan to buy an automobile within 6 mo’s rose 1.2 pts to the highest since Aug ’09. Those that see business conditions as Good rose by 1.5 pts to the highest since Nov ’08 but those who see it as Bad rose .4 pt with the balance being ‘Normal.’ One year inflation expectations rose to 5.3% from 5.2%. Net-net, the labor market answers are most relevant and showed a sign of life.
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