US consumer sentiment up despite dismal Q1 data

GMT 17:30 2014 Friday ,27 June

Arab Today, arab today US consumer sentiment up despite dismal Q1 data

US consumer sentiment
Washington - XINHUA

U.S. consumer sentiment rose in June pushed by healthy job growth, brushing aside downcast growth data in the first quarter, a survey showed on Friday.
The final reading of the consumer sentiment index in June increased to 82.5 from 81.9 in May, the monthly Thomson Reuters/ University of Michigan survey of consumers showed.
"Consumers did not expect such a negative GDP report, but it will not cause them to revise their expectations of future economic growth," said Richard Curtin, director of the survey and economist with the University of Michigan, in a statement.
The ignorance of the economy's poor performance was made possible by healthy job growth, said the survey, as 40 percent of families reported their financial situation improved in June, the highest level since 2007.
The sub-index of current economic conditions, which reflects Americans' perceptions of their financial situation and whether they consider it a good time to buy big-ticket items like houses or cars, surged from 94.5 in May to 96.6 this month.
The Labor Department said earlier this month that the U.S. economy added 217,000 jobs in May and the unemployment rate stayed at 6.3 percent as in April, the lowest level in five years, indicating that the job market was improving.
However, consumers' expectations for the future remained almost unchanged. The sub-index gauging consumer expectations for six months from now, which more closely projects the direction of consumer spending, almost maintained the same level as that in May, declining to 73.5 in June from 73.7 last month.
"Given that they ignored the dismal first quarter results, they are also likely to ignore the announcement of more favorable second quarter GDP results in the months ahead," said Curtin.
Affected by the tough winter weather, the U.S. economy contracted at an annual rate of 2.9 percent in the first quarter, the worst performance since 2009, said the Commerce Department on Wednesday.

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