Consumer Confidence Index Falls

By John S. McClenahen Consistent with some other softer economic data and the most recent stock declines, the Conference Board's closely watched index of consumer confidence fell 1.9 percentage points to 108.8 (1985=100) in April from 110.7 in March. Among measures decidedly on the downside in April was the percentage of consumers rating current economic conditions as "good." It dropped to 19.7% from 21% in March. At the same time, the percentage of consumers describing current business conditions as "bad" rose to 19.4% in April from 18.3% in March. Consumers took a mixed economic view of the next six months. Those expecting business conditions to improve rose to 26.1% in April from 25.4% in March. However, the percentage of those anticipating worsening conditions also increased -- to 6.4% in April from 6.2% in March. The New York-based research group's monthly consumer confidence data come from a representative sample of 5,000 U.S. households.

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