Downgrade weighs down confidence

Aug. 8, 2011 at 12:50 PM
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WASHINGTON, Aug. 8 (UPI) -- Consumer confidence in the U.S. economy fell in reaction to the downgrade of the country's credit rating, the Rasmussen Consumer Index indicates.

At 61.5, the index was down 3 points since Standard & Poor's downgraded the federal government's credit rating from triple-A to AA-plus, Rasmussen Reports said Monday.

Seventy percent of people surveyed said they believe the economy is getting worse, way up from 45 percent at the beginning of 2011, Rasmussen Reports said.

The Rasmussen Consumer Index, which measures economic confidence of consumers daily, is down 5 points from a week ago, 10 points from a month ago and 23 points from three months ago. Confidence is just 1 point above the lowest levels of the past two years, the index indicated.

The baseline for the index was established at 100.0 in October 2001.

Investor confidence fell to a two-year low, the Rasmussen Investor Index indicated. On Monday, the index was 64.7, down 10 points from a week ago, 16 points from a month ago and 31 points from three months ago. Investor confidence has not been lower since March 13, 2009, the index said.

Among investors, Rasmussen said just 10 percent believe the economy is getting better while 71 percent said they believed it was getting worse. At the beginning of the year, investors were evenly split.

Index data is from a national telephone survey of 1,500 adults conducted by Rasmussen Reports during the past three days. The margin of error is 2.6 percentage points. The survey was part of a larger body of data used to compile the daily Rasmussen Index.

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