HPS Analysis

ESI: Consumer Confidence Hits Lowest Point Since April 2020

Over the past two weeks, economic sentiment slumped to its lowest reading since April 2020, with the HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (ESI) declining 2.3 points to 42.9. Overall confidence in the U.S. economy sank dramatically, driving the decline along with record-low confidence in the housing market and near record-low confidence in making a major purchase.

After a slight nudge upward in the last reading, economic sentiment returned to its downward summer trend as the Delta variant surged around the country. Confidence in the U.S. economy plummeted 6.1 points to 40.5, the lowest reading since October 2019. Housing market confidence slid 0.7 points to a record low of 28.3, as home prices continued to soar. As inflation continues to pick up, consumers are quickly losing confidence about making a major purchase, with confidence falling 3.8 points to the second-lowest reading in ESI history, 32.5. Despite a strong July jobs report, labor market sentiment also fell, dropping 2.1 points to 56.5. The only indicator to rise was personal finances, increasing 1.4 points to 57.0.

The three-day moving average began on August 4 at 42.7 and oscillated for the two-week period, reaching its high of 44.9 on August 9 and closing at 44.1 on August 17.

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 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 www.civicscience.com. 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.

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