2008 Economic Calendar
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Consumer Sentiment  
Released On 12/23/2008 10:00:00 AM For Dec(f), 2008
PriorConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Sentiment Index - Level59.1 58.6 53.6  to 60.2 60.1 

Highlights
Consumer sentiment has held steady so far through December at extremely low levels. The Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index edged 1 point higher to 60.1 reflecting slight improvement in the expectations component. Inflation expectations are going to be interesting to watch in the coming months given ongoing disinflation and the risk ahead of outright deflation. Readings are still positive but have been coming down with 1-year inflation expectations steady at 1.7 percent and 5-year expectations a bit lower at 2.6 percent. The next close look on consumer spirits will be next Tuesday with the Conference Board's monthly report.

Recent History Of This Indicator
The Reuter's/University of Michigan's Consumer sentiment index bounced higher during the first part of December -- but only from record low levels. Reuters/University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index rose to 59.1 from 55.3 in November. Inflation expectations are really coming down. Inflation expectations for one year out fell 1.2 percentage points to 1.7 percent. Expectations for five years out slipped 2 tenths to 2.7 percent.

Consumer sentiment Consensus Forecast for final Dec 08: 58.6
Range: 53.6 to 60.2

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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