Consumer confidence falls in June

New York City The Conference Board said Tuesday that its Consumer Confidence Index dropped almost 10 points to 52.9, down from the revised 62.7 in May. Economists surveyed by Thomson Reuters had been expecting 62.8 for June.

The reading marked the biggest drop since February, when the index fell 10 points. The index had risen for three straight months since then.

Both components of the index -- one that measures how consumers feel now about the economy, the other that assesses their outlook over the next six months -- dropped. The Present Situation Index decreased to 25.5 in June from 29.8 in May. The Expectations Index declined to 71.2 from 84.6.

"Increasing uncertainty and apprehension about the future state of the economy and labor market, no doubt a result of the recent slowdown in job growth, are the primary reasons for the sharp reversal in confidence," said Lynn Franco, director of the Conference Board Consumer Research Center, in a statement. "Until the pace of job growth picks up, consumer confidence is not likely to pick up."

The survey showed that consumers' assessment of the labor market was less than favorable. Those claiming jobs are "hard to get" increased to 44.8% from 43.9%, while those saying jobs are "plentiful" decreased to 4.3% from 4.6%. Consumers polled were also much less optimistic about future job prospects.

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