Economic sentiment decreased once again over the past two weeks, continuing a six-week stretch of decline and dropping below the previous all-time low by a 1.2 point margin. The HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (ESI) fell to 33.3, its fifth record low in the last seven readings. Even so, confidence in personal finances rose, demonstrating the continued resilience of that indicator even as other indicators have fallen.
This week’s reading featured breaches of record-low consumer confidence nearly across the board. Four of the ESI’s five indicators hit lows not seen since the ESI’s inception in 2013:
- Confidence in the overall U.S. economy fell 2.9 points to 28.7.
- Confidence in making a major purchase fell 2.2 points to 19.2.
- Confidence in finding a new job fell 1.5 points to 48.3.
- Confidence in purchasing a new home fell 1.2 points to 18.1.
The one indicator that bucked the trend this reading—and has shown resilience across the past twelve months as other indicators declined—is confidence in personal finances. For the entirety of 2022, confidence in personal finances has been the best performing indicator of confidence; this reading, it rose 1.5 points to 52.1.