Consumer Confidence High Heading into Holidays, Per Conference Board, Retail Sales Surge


The Conference Board has released its latest data, which dipped slightly, but is still near its historic high for the past decade.


Consumer confidence is periodically cited by publicly traded manufactured home producers as important for buyers to make that major purchasing decision.

Consumer confidence was dropping in 2014 and 2015 and going into 2016, but has trended up since the election. You can download this image to see it at full size, which is almost double the size shown above.

Other recent data reflects what could be all time record holiday sales of consumer items this year.  The National Retail Federation (NRF) said that one million more people shopped during the so-called Black Friday through Cyber Monday shopping days that was expected.

Several records were set.

Cyber Monday sales surged to new highs.  A record $7.9 billion spent online that day, an increase of 19.3 percent from a year ago, per data from Adobe Analytics.

A variety of third-party data reveals that manufactured housing should be doing much better than it is.

Compare that to the modest growth in manufactured housing sales.




With that backdrop, let’s dive into some details from the Conference Board’s latest media release to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.

Despite a small decline in November, Consumer Confidence remains at historically strong levels,” said Lynn Franco, Senior Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board. Consumers’ assessment of current conditions increased slightly, with job growth the main driver of improvement. Expectations, on the other hand, weakened somewhat in November, primarily due to a less optimistic view of future business conditions and personal income prospects. Overall, consumers are still quite confident that economic growth will continue at a solid pace into early 2019. However, if expectations soften further in the coming months, the pace of growth is likely to begin moderating.”

Consumers’ assessment of current conditions improved slightly in November. Those saying business conditions are “good” rose marginally from 41.0 percent to 41.2 percent, while those claiming business conditions are “bad” increased from 9.4 percent to 10.9 percent. Consumers’ assessment of the labor market was more favorable. Those claiming jobs are “plentiful” increased from 45.4 percent to 46.6 percent, while those claiming jobs are “hard to get” decreased from 13.4 percent to 12.2 percent,” according to the Conference Board.

Consumers’ outlook for the labor market was somewhat mixed. Those expecting more jobs in the months ahead increased slightly from 22.3 percent to 22.8 percent, while those anticipating fewer jobs also increased slightly, from 10.6 percent to 11.1 percent. Regarding their short-term income prospects, the percentage of consumers expecting an improvement declined from 24.7 percent to 21.5 percent, but the proportion expecting a decrease also declined, from 8.2 percent to 7.8 percent,” they said.

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index® declined in November, following an improvement in October,” per their release to MHProNews and the media. “The Index now stands at 135.7 (1985=100), down from 137.9 in October. The Present Situation Index – based on consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions – improved slightly, from 171.9 to 172.7. The Expectations Index – based on consumers’ short-term outlook for income, business and labor market conditions – decreased from 115.1 last month to 111.0 this month.”



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In this overall positive economic environment, with affordable housing in such high demand, the industry’s professionals and investors should realize that higher goals are achievable.

That logically means that what a former MHI member called their “razzle dazzle” posturing needs to be seen for what it is, namely, serving the interests of the few aligned with the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington triangle.  That’s “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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