2008 Economic Calendar
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Consumer Sentiment  
Released On 9/26/2008 10:00:00 AM For Sep(f), 2008
PriorActual
Sentiment Index - Level73.1 70.3 

Highlights
Some of the improvement seen early in the month eased late in the month but consumer spirits in September managed to improve, to a 70.3 reading for the Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index vs. 63.0 in August and a mid-month September reading of 73.1. Month-to-month improvement may be a surprise given upheaval underway in the financial markets, but the improvement is less than remarkable given how low consumer confidence has fallen, across all measures in all reports.

A puzzling negative in today's report is a jump in 1-year inflation expectations, up 7 tenths from mid-month to 4.3 percent. Easing oil prices and slowing economic conditions would point to an easing in expectations though cost pass through from the prior increase in oil is working itself through general prices. Continued pressure in inflation expectations would add a grim twist to the economic outlook. Financial markets, focused on movements of financial shares this morning, showed no reaction to the report.

Definition
The University of Michigan's Consumer Survey Center questions 500 households each month on their financial conditions and attitudes about the economy. Consumer sentiment is directly related to the strength of consumer spending. Consumer confidence and consumer sentiment are two ways of talking about consumer attitudes. Among economic reports, consumer sentiment refers to the Michigan survey while consumer confidence refers to The Conference Board's survey. Preliminary estimates for a month are released at mid-month. Final estimates for a month are released near the end of the month.  Why Investors Care
 
[Chart]
Consumer sentiment is mainly affected by inflation and employment conditions. However, consumers are also impacted by current events such as bear & bull markets, geopolitical events such as war and terrorist attacks. Investors monitor consumer sentiment because it tends to have an impact on consumer spending over the long run (although not necessarily on a monthly basis.)
 
 

2008 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/182/12/152/293/143/284/114/255/165/306/136/277/117/258/15
Release For: JanJanFebFebMarMarAprAprMayMayJunJunJulJulAug
 
Released On: 8/299/129/2610/1710/3111/1411/2612/1212/23
Release For: AugSepSepOctOctNovNovDecDec
 


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