U.S. Consumers Confidence Growing!

By Paul Langrock –

Here’s a snapshot we researched for your perusal.

According to the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan’s preliminary June reading consumer sentiment exceeded expectations rising to 73.6 from 72.3 in May. Additionally, Michigan’s sentiment reading improved to 87.6 from 82.7 from the month before. These readings track consumer sensitivity to their financial outlook regarding likely purchases of big-ticket items – automobiles, appliances, and housing.

August home builder sentiment rose to a five year high according to the National Association of Home Builders. More importantly, an improving housing market bodes well for future consumer spending. (Fact: Total real estate sales and their related industries account for 20% of America’s GDP.)

Rising expectations bring rising mortgage rates and oil prices. As you know from our previous blogs the average 30-year fixed rate recently hit its record low. It’s now edged up for the third straight week (3.62%). The average 15-year fixed rate rose to 2.88% (up from a record low of 2.80% three weeks ago); both are still lows we never expected seeing in our lifetimes.

Oil speculation is fueling the rise in oil prices currently at $95 for West Texas Intermediate crude (WTI). While, we’d all like rates and oil to remain low that’s the price for an improving economy…anticipated higher demand.

And, that’s an economy we’re confident all consumers would prefer to reside.

Paul and Debbie