WASHINGTON (10/15/13)--American consumers are in a worse mood than expected, according to a Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan measure of consumer sentiment.
The measured index was down to 75.2 in October from 77.5 in September. While the month-to-month decline was expected, economists recently polled by Reuters believed the measure would only drop to 76 (Reuters Oct. 11).
However, survey director Richard Curtin said the drop wasn't large when weighed against the government shutdown. A St. Louis-based research firm called Macroeconomic Advisers shaved 0.2 percentage points off of its 2.1% fourth quarter annualized gross domestic product (GDP) growth prediction in the wake of the shutdown (Marketwatch.com Oct. 11).
The deconstructed metric also showed that the measure reflecting consumers' views of current conditions increased to 92.8 in October, up from 92.6 in September, while the gauge of consumers' expectations for the future fell to 63.9 in October, down from 67.8 in September.
Underlying consumers' perception that economic growth is slowing, the poll showed that consumers' expectations of one-year inflation fell to 2.9%, down from 3.3% in September (Moody's Economy.com Oct. 11).