Survey Research Group

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Massachusetts Consumer Confidence Highest in Over 12 Years

Feb. 20, 2015 | Press Release

In the News:
Confidence in Bay State soars | Boston Herald
Mass. consumer confidence reaches 12-year high | The Lowell Sun
Massachusetts consumer confidence hits 12-year high | MassLive.com
Western Massachusetts consumer confidence lags despite statewide boost | MassLive.com
MA Consumer Confidence Index Rises to Highest Level Since 2002 | GoLocalProv Worcester
Mass. consumer confidence hits 12-year high | Worcester Business Journal
Mass Insight Consumer Confidence Index | WBZ-AM
Mass Insight Consumer Confidence Index | WBUR-FM

Consumer Confidence Index Breaks the 100-point Plateau

The Mass Insight Consumer Confidence Index rose sharply in the First Quarter of 2015, with the overall score moving up nine points from 97 to 106. This represents the first time since October of 2006 that the Index has surpassed the 100-point level and is the highest rating since April 2002. The increase in the overall index was fueled nearly equally by rises in future optimism (+9 points) and optimism over present conditions (+8). Future expectations now sit at 120 – the highest such rating since October of 2012 and optimism about current conditions now stands at 84 – the highest level in that reading since April of 2007. Points over 100 represent positive confidence levels.

“Consumer confidence is at its highest level in over a decade primarily based on better economic conditions led by an increased availability of jobs,” said Mass Insight Chair, CEO and Founder William Guenther. “After reporting quarter after quarter of ‘see-saw’ scores, this is the first time in two years we’ve seen the index consecutively increase, which may be a new trend resulting from an improving economy.”

According to Fred Breimyer, a Regional Economist with FDIC, “There are two major reasons for the ongoing economic improvement that are contributing to this escalating optimism – declining unemployment is reaching levels much closer to the historical average and the sharply lower gasoline prices.”

Added Guenther, “With more people back to work and with reduced transportation and home heating costs, people have more money to spend. Furthermore, a large majority of those we surveyed indicated that now is a good time to spend – and that drives consumer confidence.”

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