NEW YORK (8/16/13)--With Americans' outlooks on the economy, personal finances and spending on the retreat, U.S. consumer confidence receded last week from its highest level in more than five years, according to the Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index (Bloomberg.com and Moody's Economy.com Aug. 15).
The index dropped to -26.6 for the week ended Aug. 11--its first decline in four weeks--from the prior week.
Nonetheless, last week's reading was the second-strongest since January 2008--behind the previous week's -23.5, Bloomberg said.
The decrease shows consumer confidence still is tenuous and could be negatively impacted by rising fuel costs and interest rates, Bloomberg said.
However, at the same time, escalating stock prices and property values are enhancing consumers' personal wealth, lifting their spending, which constitutes 70% of the U.S. economy, Bloomberg said.