The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index increased to 43.6 in the week ended Jan. 4, the highest level since October 2007, from 42.7 the period before, according to data issued today. Another report showed fewer workers filed for unemployment benefits last week, indicating employers are holding on to seasonal hires.
Fewer dismissals are making employed workers more secure ahead of a report tomorrow that is projected to show more Americans found jobs last month. Confidence is even firming among lower-income groups, indicating the benefits of the cheapest gasoline prices in more than five years and the lowest mortgage rates since mid-2013 are rippling through the economy.
Employment has “been the overriding factor boosting consumer confidence,” said Jennifer Lee, senior economist at BMO Capital Markets in Toronto. “You can point to gasoline prices, you can point to low rates in general, but at the end of the day, the job market is the most important.”
For the full report click here.