Consumer sentiment in US rise in May, remains at 5-month low

(MENAFN) Final results from the University of Michigan's consumer survey, released on Friday, revealed a revision upwards in US consumer sentiment for May. However, despite this upward revision, sentiment remains at its lowest level in five months. The index of consumer sentiment notably declined by 8.1 points to 69.1 in May, down from 77.2 in April. While the initial estimate for the index was slightly higher at 67.4, the significant decrease highlights a notable shift in consumer perceptions.

Joanne Hsu, Director of Surveys of Consumers, emphasized the significance of this decline, noting that it brings sentiment to its lowest reading in approximately five months. Hsu highlighted concerns over the year-ahead outlook for business conditions, which saw a particularly notable decline, while views regarding personal finances remained relatively unchanged.

One of the primary concerns expressed by consumers relates to labor markets, with expectations of rising unemployment rates and slowing income growth. Additionally, the prospect of continued high interest rates has weighed down consumer views, further contributing to the subdued sentiment.

Moreover, the survey revealed an increase in year-ahead inflation expectations, rising from 3.2 percent last month to 3.3 percent this month. Despite this uptick, inflation expectations remain elevated compared to the pre-pandemic range of 2.3-3.0 percent. While there was a slight easing to 2.9 percent in January, it remained above the levels seen in the years preceding the pandemic, indicating ongoing concerns about inflationary pressures among consumers.



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