U.S. Consumer Sentiment Declines
Jul 17, 2009
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After four consecutive months of rising hopes that the economy would turn around in the next six months, the longest such increase in expectations since the launch of the index in 2002, many Americans are coming to grips with the idea that it may still be some time before things get better, said the RBC CASH (Consumer Attitudes and Spending by Household) Index. The Index show a marked downward shift for July 2009, continuing the slide begun last month. The RBC CASH Index for July 2009 stands at 22.4, an 11.9 point decline from June's 34.3 reading.

"The RBC CASH Index for July confirms what we first saw last month: consumers are getting realistic. They're coming to grips with the idea that we will not see a quick economic turnaround but instead face a lengthy, drawn-out recovery," said RBC Capital Markets Managing Director Larry Miller. "Consumer confidence is resetting to the levels seen earlier this year and is likely to remain there until there is concrete evidence of a turnaround."

The survey also showed that most consumers are less comfortable with investing and major spending. Nearly two-thirds (64%) of consumers say they are less confident now in their ability to make investments for the future, including retirement and education, than they were six months ago. Currently, 68% of consumers say it is a bad time to invest in the stock market, compared to 63% in June.

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