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The Conference Board said yesterday that its September Consumer Confidence Index dropped to 53.1, from 54.5 in August, a development that apparently surprised economists and analysts who were expecting an uptick in confidence.

"Consumers remain quite apprehensive about the short-term outlook and their incomes," said Lynn Franco, director of the Conference Board Consumer Research Center. "With the holiday season quickly approaching, this is not very encouraging news."

The Conference Board’s index of how consumers view the current economic situation also dropped, from 25.4 to 22.7, as did the expectation index, from 73.8 to 73.3.
KC's View:
All of which illustrates a simple fact – that while some economists and politicians may be saying that the recession is “technically” over, such pronouncements won’t matter as long as consumers have a recession mindset. And it is going to take a lot longer for that to change … especially because unemployment figures continue to worsen, which actually should make the confidence numbers no surprise.