Consumer sentiment rose in December to a level so high for 2018 only two other periods have beat it in the past fifty-eight years, according to the University of Michigan.
“If the current expansion lasts past mid-2019, as is likely based on current data, it will become the longest expansion ever recorded,” the Friday University of Michigan release stated.
December consumer sentiment hit 98.3 percent, according to University of Michigan numbers released Friday. The number represents a 2.5 percent increase since last year and the highest level since the year 2000.
Only two periods of time, 1964-65 and 1997-2000, were higher than it was in 2018, which has hit a Sentiment Index average of 98.4. The University of Michigan explained the two prior period highs “correspond[ed] to the two longest prior expansions since the mid 1800’s.”
“While the plunge in stock prices has recently garnered the most attention in the national press, consumers have focused more on their concerns about income and job prospects,” the release stated. 70 percent of those surveyed “anticipated no increase in unemployment in the year ahead.”
Only 12 percent expressed concern over falling stock prices as a primary economic concern. The release went on to state, “it has been news of changing job and income prospects that have been of the greatest concern to consumers.”