Bloomberg published its weekly Consumer Comfort Index on Thursday. While the index showed an expected drop from negative 36.1 to negative 37.5 since last week, some of the survey results driving the overall average were unexpected. While respondents gave personal finances a rating of 1.8 (the survey ranges from negative 100 to 100), respondents viewed the state of the economy as negative 71.7.
The demographic data showed great disparities of opinion among key voting blocks as well. Overall, men came in at negative 30.2, but women trailed at negative 44.3, meaning that women are feeling far more uneasy about their state of affairs. Further, those aged 18 to 34 felt significantly better about the economy than those older than 65. Strangely enough, it’s the 18 to 34 year olds who have the highest unemployment rates.
Finally, Independent voters rated consumer comfort twice as low as Democrats suggesting that Democrats may be more financially secure than Independent voters – whether perceived or real. Below are a few charts that show these disparities. It seems that the consumer is still having difficulty trusting the markets right now. But, don't worry, the private sector is doing fine, right President Obama?
The survey began in December 1985, and has included the following questions: Would you describe the state of the nation’s economy these days as excellent, good, not so good, or poor? Would you describe the state of your own personal finances these days as excellent, good, not so good, or poor? Considering the cost of things today and your own personal finances, would you say now is an excellent time, a good time, a not so good time or a poor time to buy the things you want and need?