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The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, which had improved moderately in September, fell to an all-time low in October. The Index now stands at 38.0 (1985=100), down from 61.4 in September.
The Consumer Confidence Survey is a monthly survey based on a representative sample of 5,000
Says Lynn Franco, Director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center: "The impact of the financial crisis over the last several weeks has clearly taken a toll on consumers' confidence.". "The decline in the Index (-23.4 points) is the third largest in the history of the series, and the lowest reading on record. In assessing current conditions, consumers rated the labor market and business conditions much less favorably, suggesting that the fourth quarter is off to a weaker start than the third quarter.
"Looking ahead, consumers are extremely pessimistic, and a significantly larger proportion than last month foresees business and labor market conditions worsening. Their earnings outlook, as well as inflation outlook, is also more pessimistic, and this news does not bode well for retailers who are already bracing for what is shaping up to be a very challenging holiday season.