fbpx
White House ‘Social Media Summit’: No Facebook, No Twitter, No Transparency CopyRead more White House ‘Social Media Summit’: No Facebook, No Twitter, No TransparencyRead more White House ‘Social Media Summit’: No Facebook, No Twitter, No TransparencyRead more White House ‘Social Media Summit’: No Facebook, No Twitter, No TransparencyRead more White House ‘Social Media Summit’: No Facebook, No Twitter, No TransparencyRead more White House ‘Social Media Summit’: No Facebook, No Twitter, No TransparencyRead more Twitter to Label Tweets by Leaders Who Break Its RulesRead more Twitter to Label Tweets by Leaders Who Break Its RulesRead more Twitter to Label Tweets by Leaders Who Break Its RulesRead more Twitter to Label Tweets by Leaders Who Break Its RulesRead more

US consumer confidence drops sharply in August on Delta fears

show caption
Many US businesses have again imposed mask-wearing requirements as Covid-19 infections rise./AFP
Print Friendly and PDF

Sep 01, 2021 - 03:57 AM

WASHINGTON — Fear of the fast spreading Delta variant of Covid-19 and rising prices undermined Americans’ confidence in August, according to a survey released Tuesday.

The Conference Board said its consumer confidence index fell more than 10 points to 113.8, the lowest since February and the second consecutive monthly decline after the July index was revised down to 125.1.

“Concerns about the Delta variant — and, to a lesser degree, rising gas and food prices — resulted in a less favorable view of current economic conditions and short-term growth prospects,” Lynn Franco, senior director of economic indicators at The Conference Board, said in a statement.

The surge in infections and hospitalizations due to the new variant has caused businesses to re-impose mask-wearing requirements, while the end of government stimulus benefits has taken a toll on free-spending consumers.

At the same time, the recovering economy continues to deal with supply bottlenecks that have sent prices rising.

Franco noted that while plans for major spending — on homes, autos, and major appliances — “cooled somewhat,” more Americans are planning vacations in the next six months.

“While the resurgence of COVID-19 and inflation concerns have dampened confidence, it is too soon to conclude this decline will result in consumers significantly curtailing their spending in the months ahead,” Franco said.

However, the expectations index which reflects consumers’ short-term outlook for income, business and labor market conditions dropped to 91.4 from 103.8.

Consumer views on the current and future prospects for the labor market deteriorated very slightly, while sentiment about business conditions were more downbeat, according to the survey.

Economist Robert Frick of Navy Federal Credit Union said confidence “finally succumbed to the rising COVID-19 Delta wave.”

However, he said, “Americans overall are flush with cash and eager to spend it as the economy reopens.”

  • bio
  • twitter
  • facebook
  • latest posts

LMBCBUSINESS.COM uses both Facebook and Disqus comment systems to make it easier for you to contribute. We encourage all readers to share their views on our articles and blog posts. All comments should be relevant to the topic. By posting, you agree to our Privacy Policy. We are committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion, so we ask you to avoid personal attacks, name-calling, foul language or other inappropriate behavior. Please keep your comments relevant and respectful. By leaving the ‘Post to Facebook’ box selected – when using Facebook comment system – your comment will be published to your Facebook profile in addition to the space below. If you encounter a comment that is abusive, click the “X” in the upper right corner of the Facebook comment box to report spam or abuse. You can also email us.