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Low Consumer Confidence: A Nice Contrarian Indicator

By John S. Tobey

Throughout the summer, we’ve heard about declining consumer confidence (AKA, sentiment). The conclusion typically drawn is that low consumer confidence now likely means low consumer spending ahead. Until recently, warnings have been sounded about weak winter holiday sales. Now, however, consumer confidence readings are creeping back, and retail sales are actually looking good. How... »

The US Consumer Is Back and That Means…

By John S. Tobey

… the US economy is back. Forget the picture of deflated, fearful consumers keeping their 2/3 of the economy moribund. Normal times are upon us, making the 2011 outlook rosy. »

Consumer Sentiment: Leading Indicator or Reflection of Today’s News?

By John S. Tobey

Consumer sentiment and confidence surveys make the headlines and influence the stock market (for the day, at least). The thought is that people’s feelings influence their spending. And with consumer spending making up a large part of the economy… The question is are those feelings prescient and stable – a leading indicator that can... »

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