2017 Economic Calendar
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Consumer Sentiment  
Released On 4/13/2017 10:00:00 AM For Apr(p), 2017
PriorConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Sentiment Index - Level96.9 97.0 95.5  to 97.5 98.0 

After cooling in February and March, the consumer sentiment index is showing new strength. Preliminary April index is up 1.1 points to 98.0 which beats the Econoday consensus by 1 full point and Econoday's high estimate by a 1/2 point.

Strength is centered in the current assessment, up 2 points to 115.2 which is a 17-year high. This offers a positive indication for April consumer spending. Expectations are also higher, up 4 tenths to 86.9 to signal confidence in the jobs outlook.

Despite the strength, inflation expectations are very subdued, unchanged at 2.5 percent for the 1-year outlook and unchanged at 2.4 percent for the 5-year.

The report notes that divergence in its sample between Republicans and Democrats has fully narrowed on the current assessment but remains unusually wide on expectations where Republicans see strength and Democrats weakness.

The 17-year high on the current conditions index, at a time when consumer spending is weak and GDP soft, is a reminder that high confidence readings have yet to translate to economic strength.

Consensus Outlook
The consumer sentiment index remains strong but has been edging back from post-election highs, peaking at 98.5 in January and ending March at 96.9. The falloff has been centered in the expectations component and includes an unusual decline in inflation expectations. In contrast, the current conditions component has continued to make new highs. Econoday's consensus for preliminary March calls for a steady reading, at 97.0.

The University of Michigan's Consumer Survey Center questions 600 households each month on their financial conditions and attitudes about the economy. Consumer sentiment is directly related to the strength of consumer spending. Consumer confidence and consumer sentiment are two ways of talking about consumer attitudes. Among economic reports, consumer sentiment refers to the Michigan survey while consumer confidence refers to The Conference Board's survey. Preliminary estimates for a month are released at mid-month. Final estimates for a month are released near the end of the month.  Why Investors Care
Consumer sentiment is mainly affected by inflation and employment conditions. However, consumers are also impacted by current events such as bear & bull markets, geopolitical events such as war and terrorist attacks. Investors monitor consumer sentiment because it tends to have an impact on consumer spending over the long run [although not necessarily on a monthly basis.]

2017 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/131/272/102/243/173/314/134/285/125/266/166/307/147/288/18
Release For: JanJanFebFebMarMarAprAprMayMayJunJunJulJulAug
Released On: 9/19/159/2910/1310/2711/1011/2212/812/22
Release For: AugSepSepOctOctNovNovDecDec

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