Consumer confidence

How Will Consumer Sentiment Affect Year-end Spending?

As September draws to a close, the holiday season will soon be upon us. It is also the traditional time when consumer spending surges make the annual difference between retailers reaching profits or red ink. But according to a recent consumer study conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates on behalf of BankRate.com, many consumers have already begun tightening household budgets.

Seniors' depression over economy may bode ill for Perry

The survey results are in and Florida's old folks are scared out of their wits.

That should give pause to the Republican presidential candidates preparing to debate in Orlando on Thursday.

Social Security concerns unnerve Florida seniors

MIAMI (Reuters) - Florida seniors were so rattled by proposed changes to Social Security emerging in the U.S. political debate that their Consumer Sentiment levels plunged more than that of any other age group in August, an economic survey showed.

And that was before Texas Governor Rick Perry called the popular retirement program a "Ponzi scheme" during last week's debate among Republican presidential candidates.

Economists' forecast starts to reflect public sentiment

The National Association for Business Economics has trimmed its forecast for U.S. economic growth to 1.7 percent from 2.8 percent.

NABE cites a laundry list of reasons for revising its forecasts lower, including low consumer and business confidence, uncertainty about future economic policies, a weak housing market and tight credit. The association’s panelists say they are also very concerned about high unemployment, the federal deficit and the European debt crisis.

Florida business, labor leaders praise Obama jobs plan

WASHINGTON — In job-starved Florida, President Barack Obama's nationally televised address to Congress sparked renewed hope on Friday that a burst of federal spending and tax incentives would prompt companies to begin hiring again.

Dip in Florida Consumer Sentiment points toward recession

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Consumer Sentiment among Floridians decreased to a near-record low in August, according to a new University of Florida survey. This month’s mark of 62 is only three points higher than the record-low 59 set in June 2008.

Psyche will drive possible double-dip

The stock market's recent Tower of Terror routine — hair-raising free falls followed by a quick bounce back up — was enough to ramp up already heightened fears of a second recession. But unlike the Disney ride, the panic isn't coming to an end any time soon.

Concerns about a double-dip picked up momentum as the Standard & Poor's downgrade of U.S. debt and market drops gripped the nation with renewed anxiety.

Wrapping up your back-to-school shopping? It's tax savings time

Summer is nearly over, school supply lists are out and Florida's sales tax holiday runs Friday through Sunday, giving all shoppers a break from the 6.5 percent added to store receipts.

That break is limited, but the limits have been raised this year: clothing that costs $75 or less, up from $50 last year; and school supplies up to $15, up from $10. Books, however, have been removed from tax-exempt status.

UF survey: Consumer Sentiment registers modest increase in July

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Increased optimism about making major purchases played a significant role in Consumer Sentiment rising two points in July to 68, according to a new University of Florida survey.

Four of the five components that make up the index increased or remained unchanged. The biggest improvement was in confidence to purchase big-ticket items such as cars and appliances which rose five points to 77.

Florida consumers' funk hurts economy

Florida's consumers are financially queasy.

For two years, they have bobbed along in a sea of anxiety. Shaken by job losses and sagging home values, their unease is reflected in the monthly Consumer Sentiment reports produced by the University of Florida's Survey Research Center.

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