Release Explanation: This is the Conference Board's survey of consumer confidence regarding current and future economic conditions. The survey, based on responses from about 5000 households, builds an economic picture of the mood of the economy’s consumer and therefore how well the service based economies may fair over the coming months. Retail Sales, New & Existing Home Sales, CPI, Durable Goods, and GDP over a period of time if a constant trend is being built. A currency will eventually be affected by these numbers, but only once they filter through to the main releases.
Trade Desk Thoughts: After a sharp decline in February, consumer confidence was relatively unchanged in March, the Conference Board said today.
The index rose to 26.0, up from February's record-low 25.3. The Expectations Index increased to 28.9 from 27.3 while the Present Situation Index declined to 21.5 from 22.3.
Consumers remain very pessimistic, said Matthew Carniol, chief currency strategist at TheLFB-forex.com. The weaker outlook for employment indicates that consumption is likely to stay very weak.
Consumers' assessment of overall present-day conditions remains unfavorable. Those claiming business conditions are bad rose to 51.1% from 50.5%, while those claiming business conditions are good edged down to 6.8% from 7.0% last month.
Consumers' appraisal of the labor market was somewhat more pessimistic in March. The percentage of consumers saying jobs are hard to get increased to 48.7% from 46.9% in February, while those claiming jobs are plentiful was unchanged at 4.6%.
Consumers' short-term outlook was moderately less negative this month. Consumers expecting business conditions will worsen over the next six months edged down to 39.1% from 40.7%, while those anticipating conditions to improve increased to 9.1% from 8.5% in February.
The employment outlook was also moderately less pessimistic. The percentage of consumers expecting fewer jobs in the months ahead decreased to 42.6% from 47.0%, while those expecting more jobs edged up to 7.1% from 6.8%. The proportion of consumers expecting an increase in their incomes declined to 7.5% from 7.9%.
Forex Technical Reaction: Stocks were declining in the first thirty minutes of trading and the dollar was gaining against the euro, pound and Australian dollar.