US consumer sentiment
Consumer sentiment in the US is tracked by the Thomson Reuters-University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index, or CSI. The CSI measures the level of consumer confidence in the country and is an important indicator for investors, retailers, as well as economists. The index rises when consumers gain confidence in the economy.
The index for December
The consumer confidence index is reported on a monthly basis. The final reading on overall consumer sentiment stood at 93.6 in December 2014, up from 88.8 in November 2014. This is the highest final reading since January 2007.
Consumer confidence in the US averaged 77.1 between 2005 and 2014, peaking at 96.9 in January 2007. An improving job market with better security and lower gasoline prices continue to improve consumer sentiment. A surge in consumer confidence levels means that Americans expect better economic growth and rising incomes in the coming months.
Consumer sentiment and casinos
Improving consumer sentiment usually indicates a better job market and increasing incomes. It indicates good growth prospects for the overall economy. This is positive for casino stocks including Las Vegas Sands (LVS), MGM Resorts International (MGM), Wynn Resorts (WYNN), and Penn National Gaming (PENN). It’s also good news for the VanEck Vectors Gaming ETF (BJK) that has ~26% exposure to these companies.