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U.S. consumer sentiment index unexpectedly declines in early May

A report from the University of Michigan revealed on Friday the preliminary reading for the Reuters/Michigan index of consumer sentiment decreased 6.2 percent m-o-m to 82.8 in early May. This was the lowest reading since February.

Economists had expected the index would increase to 90.4 this month from April’s final reading of 88.3.

According to the report, the index of current U.S. economic conditions fell 6.6 percent m-o-m to 90.8 in May from 97.2 in the previous month. Meanwhile, the index of consumer expectations dropped 6.2 percent m-o-m to 77.6 this month from 82.7 in April.

“Consumer confidence in early May tumbled due to higher inflation - the highest expected year-ahead inflation rate as well as the highest long term inflation rate in the past decade,” noted Surveys of Consumers chief economist, Richard Curtin. “Rising inflation also meant that real income expectations were the weakest in five years,” he added. 

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