Aug Consumer Sentiment

The University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment measure was not able to make much of a rebound in August after experiencing a significant drop in July.  The indicator nudged just a touch higher to 68.9 from 67.8, still lower than that seen at the bottom of some prior recessions.
The most forward looking component of the index, the index of consumer expectations, was up 1% but remains at a depressed level, with the overall view for future income and job growth still quite dull. Half of the households surveyed do not expect an increase in their income over the next year.  In fact, they expect their inflation adjusted income to decline.  Not that they feel there are any viable options.  Eight out of ten households do not expect unemployment to be any lower in the next twelve months.  Only one in three currently expect the economy to grow at an uninterrupted pace over the next five years.
With sentiment as negative as this report suggest, it is difficult to be excited by the marginal increase in the indicator.  Consumer expectations are supposed to be forward looking and provide a hint to spending probability.  From the current survey the view does not appear reassuring.