The Rasmussen Consumer Index, which measures consumer confidence on a daily basis, held steady on Wednesday at 98.9. Consumer confidence is up a point from a week ago, but is down 10 points from a month ago and one point from three months ago.
The Rasmussen Investor Index slipped two points on Wednesday to 114.3. Investor confidence is still up three points from a week ago but is down 15 points from a month ago and four points from three months ago.
On the final day of 2011, 36% of American adults rated their own finances as good or excellent. That was most optimistic assessment of the month and highlighted a trend of modestly improving confidence during the final two months of the year.
More than seven years ago, U.S. troops captured Saddam Hussein at a time when Iraq was the central front in the War on Terror, and Hussein was public enemy number one. That capture led to an immediate increase in consumer and investor confidence.
The Rasmussen Reports Consumer Index for the full month of November shows the highest level of economic confidence in more than two-and-a-half years. The Consumer Index monthly rating of 84.3 is the highest since February 2008 but is still well below the baseline month of October 2001, just after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Consumer confidence in January rose for the second straight month and has almost reached the levels enjoyed before the financial industry meltdown in September 2008.
Government employees are much more bullish about the economy than those who work in the private sector. That’s a big change from the beginning of the year when those on the public payroll were a bit more pessimistic than private sector workers.
Both consumers and investors are less confident about the economy than they were a year ago when the Lehman Brothers financial firm collapsed and Wall Street's woes became front-page news.
Over the past year, overall levels of consumer confidence have bounced around a lot but ended up with little change. For the full month June 2008, the Rasmussen Consumer Index was at 71.9. In June, 2009, that number was 72:0.
Full monthly results for the Rasmussen Consumer Index in December shows that the economic confidence of American consumers has fallen to another all-time low at 59.6.
Full monthly results for the Rasmussen Consumer Index in November shows the economic confidence of American consumers has fallen to another all-time low at 64.5.