Consumers’ confidence made a comeback in February, reporting an increase for the first time since October and offering broad gains that extended to nearly every major sub index. Unfortunately for home builders, however, housing was the exception.
Overall, the Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index was up 11.2 points for the month to a reading of 69.6. The index gauging consumers’ feelings on the present situation was up 7.1 points to 63.3, and expectations for the next six months were up 23%.
On housing, however, sentiment took the reverse trend. The percentage of respondents that reported they plan to buy a home within the coming six months declines from 5.4% in January to 3.7% this month.
Other areas with a large impact on housing, such as jobs, showed strength. The index measuring perceptions of the labor market edged up to -26.5, from -28.1 the previous month. Income expectations also showed modest improvement.
See the Conference Board’s release discussing February’s reading.
Claire Easley is a senior editor at Builder.