Consumer Confidence Index plunges

The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index, which was virtually unchanged in June, declined 6.9 points in July to 76.6, while the Expectations Index fell to 86.4 from 96.4 and the Present Situation Index declined to 61.9 from 64.2. Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board's Consumer Research Center, said the rising level of unemployment and sentiment that a turnaround in labor market conditions is not around the corner have contributed to deflating consumers' spirits in July. "Expectations are likely to remain weak until the job market becomes more favorable," Franco said. Consumers anticipating more jobs to become available over the next six months declined 1.9 points to 16.8 %, while those expecting fewer jobs increased to 19.8% from 16.9%.

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