Boat sales and the housing market are red hot. Can that trend continue post-election and post-pandemic?
The U.S. economy added 1.4 million jobs in August, but consumer confidence was mixed in two key surveys as the country continued to battle the novel coronavirus pandemic.
The unemployment rate fell to 8.4 percent, but nearly 14 million people remained out of work, underscoring how far the economy has fallen and how much ground it still has to make up.
“We’re finally in single-digit territory – that’s a positive,” Beth Ann Bovino, chief economist at S&P Global Ratings Services, told The Washington Post. “This is a good report.”
Meanwhile, The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index fell to 84.8 in August from 91.7 in July. The latest reading was a six-year low for the closely followed index.
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“Consumer confidence declined in August for the second consecutive month,” Lynn Franco, senior director of economic indicators at The Conference Board, stated in a press release. “The Present Situation Index decreased sharply, with consumers stating that both business and employment conditions had deteriorated over the past month. Consumers’ optimism about the short-term outlook, and their financial prospects, also declined and continues on a downward path. Consumer spending has rebounded in recent months but increasing concerns amongst consumers about the economic outlook and their financial well-being will likely cause spending to cool in the months ahead.”
The University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index rose in August, but only slightly, to 74.1 from 72.5 in July.