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Florida consumer confidence at 15-year high amid growing pessimism about the future

A rising stock market -- as the Dow Jones Industrial Average eclipsed the 20,000 mark for the first time last week -- has helped increase consumer confidence. But Floridians are increasingly considered about where the economy will be five years from now. 
[Getty Images file photo]

A rising stock market -- as the Dow Jones Industrial Average eclipsed the 20,000 mark for the first time last week -- has helped increase consumer confidence. But Floridians are increasingly considered about where the economy will be five years from now. [Getty Images file photo]
Published Jan. 31, 2017

Consumer confidence among Floridians has reached the highest point in nearly 15 years, though there is growing gloominess about what the future holds, according to a University of Florida report released Tuesday morning.

The UF survey found consumer sentiment in the state ticked up another one-half point in January to 97.8, up from a revised 97.3 in December. That's the highest reading since March 2002.

Of the five components that make up the Florida index, three increased and two decreased, UF researchers said.

The greatest increase, a 5.4-point jump, came in perceptions of one's personal financial situation now compared with a year ago. Economic data in the state has been generally positive, with the unemployment rate at 4.9 percent and 251,400 jobs added over the past year. The stock market, prior to this week, has been trending up with the Dow Jones Industrial Average recently breaking the 20,000 milestone.

However, survey respondents were more pessimistic about where the economy is headed.

Expectations of U.S. economic conditions over the next year dropped 3.3 points, from 99.9 to 96.6, while anticipated U.S. economic conditions over the next five years fell 2.7 points from 98.5 to 95.8.

The survey was conducted between Jan. 1 and Jan. 26. The index is benchmarked to 1966, which means a value of 100 represents the same level of confidence for that year.