Make us your home page
Instagram

Florida consumer confidence slips to match an 18-month low

Consumer confidence among Floridians fell again last month to tie with September 2015 for the lowest reading in 18 months, according to a University of Florida survey released Friday.

The trendline, UF researchers said, showed those making less money were increasingly pessimistic compared with those with higher incomes.

Out of five components used in the index, three dropped and two rose.

The steepest decline came in consumers' perception of their personal financial situation compared with a year ago. That fell 3.5 points to 82. The only group of Floridians who felt more confident were those with income above $50,000.

Opinions as to whether now is a good time to buy a big-ticket item such as an automobile went up slightly, but again the perceptions of those with incomes below $50,000 went down.

While perceptions of current economic conditions have deteriorated overall, "this pessimistic sentiment started a month earlier for those with annual incomes under $50,000," said Hector H. Sandoval, director of the Economic Analysis Program at UF's Bureau of Economic and Business Research.

UF said the three-month decline in consumer sentiment runs counter to some positive economic indicators, such as growing economic output and falling unemployment statewide.

Christopher McCarty, director of the Bureau of Economic and Business Research, said there may be further declines over the next few months.

"As the campaigns for U.S. president get in full swing, it's not unusual to see drops in sentiment as consumers hear negative economic opinions and anticipate what each candidate might do," he said.

Last month's one-point drop in confidence put the index at 89. The index is benchmarked to 1966, which means a value of 100 represents the same level of confidence for that year.

Florida consumer confidence slips to match an 18-month low 06/24/16 [Last modified: Friday, June 24, 2016 7:48pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Last orca calf born in captivity at a SeaWorld park dies

    Tourism

    ORLANDO — The last killer whale born in captivity under SeaWorld's former orca-breeding program died Monday at the company's San Antonio, Texas, park, SeaWorld said.

    Thet orca Takara helps guide her newborn, Kyara, to the water's surface at SeaWorld San Antonio in San Antonio, Texas, in April. Kyara was the final killer whale born under SeaWorld's former orca-breeding program. The Orlando-based company says 3-month-old Kyara died Monday. [Chris Gotshall/SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment via AP]
  2. Miami woman, 74, admits to voter fraud. Does jail await, or will she go free?

    State Roundup

    MIAMI — An 74-year-old woman pleaded guilty Monday to filling out other people's mail-in ballots while working at Miami-Dade's elections department.

    Gladys Coego
  3. Bigger ships carry Georgia ports to record cargo volumes

    Economic Development

    SAVANNAH, Ga. — Bigger ships arriving through an expanded Panama Canal pushed cargo volumes at Georgia's seaports to record levels in fiscal 2017, the Georgia Ports Authority announced Monday.

    The Port of Savannah moved a record 3.85 million container units in fiscal 2017, the state said, benefiting from the larger ships that can now pass through an expanded Panama Canal.
  4. Dragon ride in Harry Potter section of Universal closing for new themed ride

    Florida

    Universal Orlando announced Monday that it will close Dragon Challenge for a new "highly themed" Harry Potter ride to open in 2019 — sending wizard fans into a guessing game with hopes for a Floo Powder Network or the maze from the Triwizard Tournament.

    Universal Orlando announced Monday that it will close Dragon Challenge on Sept. 5 for a new "highly themed" Harry Potter ride to open in 2019. The ride, originally the Dueling Dragons roller coaster, was renamed and incorporated into the Wizarding World of Harry Potter when the hugely popular area opened in 2010.
  5. Would you let your company implant a chip in you?

    Working Life

    Would you ask an employee to get a chip implanted in her hand? Sounds invasive and intrusive. But come Aug. 1, one company in Wisconsin will be giving it a try.

    Three Square Market - a developer of software used in vending machines - is offering all of its employees the option to get a microchip implanted between the thumb and forefinger. [Photo from video]