2018 Economic Calendar
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Consumer Sentiment  
Released On 3/2/2018 10:00:00 AM For Feb(f), 2018
PriorConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Sentiment Index - Level99.9 99.5 98.0  to 100.3 99.7 

Consumer sentiment, at 99.7, ended February roughly at the mid-month reading and well above January's 95.7. The tax cut appears to be the driver of the optimism and was quantified in yesterday's personal income & outlays report where personal taxes fell 3.3 percent in data for January.

The two components in today's report show similar gains: current conditions up 4.4 points to 114.9 which hints at improvement for February consumer spending; and expectations up 3.7 points to 90.0 to underscore the consumer's confidence in the outlooks for jobs and income.

Readings on inflation expectations, in contrast to inflationary concerns in the financial markets, show no pressure whatsoever, unchanged for a third straight month at 2.7 percent for the 1-year outlook and unchanged for a second straight month at 2.5 percent for the 5-year outlook.

Consumer confidence remains a standout feature of the economic data, in contrast to actual consumer spending which has been more moderate than robust.

Consensus Outlook
The consumer sentiment index, reflecting strength in the preliminary February report, is expected to end the month at a consensus 99.5 vs January's 95.7. Before the sudden mid-month gain, this report had been running at much less optimistic levels than the rival consumer confidence report.

The University of Michigan's Consumer Survey Center questions 600 households each month on their financial conditions and attitudes about the economy. Consumer sentiment is directly related to the strength of consumer spending. Consumer confidence and consumer sentiment are two ways of talking about consumer attitudes. Among economic reports, consumer sentiment refers to the Michigan survey while consumer confidence refers to The Conference Board's survey. Preliminary estimates for a month are released at mid-month. Final estimates for a month are released near the end of the month.  Why Investors Care
Consumer sentiment is mainly affected by inflation and employment conditions. However, consumers are also impacted by current events such as bear & bull markets, geopolitical events such as war and terrorist attacks. Investors monitor consumer sentiment because it tends to have an impact on consumer spending over the long run [although not necessarily on a monthly basis.]

2018 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/192/22/163/23/163/294/134/275/115/256/156/297/137/278/17
Release For: JanJanFebFebMarMarAprAprMayMayJunJunJulJulAug
Released On: 8/319/149/2810/1210/2611/911/2112/712/21
Release For: AugSepSepOctOctNovNovDecDec

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