U.S. consumer confidence fell to lower-than-expected levels in October, amid growing concerns that job market conditions will worsen in the near term, according to a report released on Tuesday.
The Conference Board, an industry group, said its index of consumer attitudes slipped to 47.7 in October from a revised 53.4 in September, which was originally reported as 53.1.
Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast a reading of 53.1.
The index level is the weakest since July, when it stood at 47.4, according to the Conference Board.
The present situation component of the survey dipped to 20.7 in October from 23.0 the prior month -- its lowest reading in 26 years.
The short-term outlook has also grown more negative, as a greater proportion of consumers anticipate business and labor market conditions will worsen in the months ahead, said Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center, in a release.
More Americans surveyed said jobs were hard to get in October, with that gauge rising to 49.6 percent from 47.0 percent in September. Those claiming jobs plentiful fell to 3.4 percent from 3.6 percent last month.
Consumers also remain quite pessimistic about their future earnings, a sentiment that will likely constrain spending during the holidays, Franco said.
(Reporting by Camille Drummond, Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)