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U.S. Consumer Sentiment Drops Slightly Less Than Previously Estimated In October

Revised data released by the University of Michigan on Friday showed consumer sentiment in the U.S. deteriorated by slightly less than previously estimated in the month of October.

The report said the consumer sentiment index for October was upwardly revised to 63.8 from the preliminary estimate of 63.0.

The upward revision surprised economists, who had expected the reading to be unrevised, although the index is still down sharply from 67.9 in September.

Surveys of Consumers Director Joanne Hsu said the monthly decrease was “driven in large part by higher-income consumers and those with sizable stock holdings, consistent with recent weakness in equity markets.”

“Across all consumers, one-year expected business conditions plunged 16% and expectations over consumers’ own personal finances in the year ahead fell 8%, reflecting ongoing concerns about inflation and, to a lesser degree, uncertainty over the implications of negative news both domestically and abroad,” Hsu said.

The University of Michigan said the current economic conditions index dipped to 70.6 in October from 71.1 in September, while the index of consumer expectations slumped to 59.3 in October from 65.8 in September.

The report also showed a sharp increase in year-ahead inflation expectations, which surged to 4.2 percent in October from 3.2 percent in September, reaching the highest level since May.

Long-run inflation expectations also rose to 3.0 percent in October from 2.8 percent in September but remained within the narrow 2.9-3.1 percent range seen for 25 of the last 27 months.

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