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Consumer Confidence. Ugh.

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A fall in the personal satisfaction index. Riley Raker hide caption

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The newest Consumer Confidence Index is in. Guess which way it went?

Down, of course. With 100 as the top of the scale, we're now at an all-time low of 25. That's a drop from 37.4 in January.

The Wall Street Journal says Fed Chairman Bernanke is telling Congress today that the recession could end this year.

Me, I'm living for the Present Situation Index, which fell from 29.7 to 21.2. In today's press release, the Conference Board's director, Lynn Franco, says:

"The decline in the Present Situation Index, driven by worsening business conditions and a rapidly deteriorating job market, suggests that overall economic conditions have weakened even further this quarter.

"Looking ahead, increasing concerns about business conditions, employment and earnings have further sapped confidence and driven expectations to their lowest level ever. In addition, inflation expectations, which had been easing over the past several months, have moderately picked up. All in all, not only do consumers feel overall economic conditions have grown more dire, but just as disconcerting, they anticipate no improvement in conditions over the next six months."

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