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What July 2017 Consumer Sentiment Suggests for Auto Sector

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Aug. 4 2017, Updated 6:37 a.m. ET

July 2017 consumer sentiment data

According to the latest data released on July 14, US consumer sentiment was at 93.4 in July 2017, higher than 90.0 in July 2016. In June 2017, the index rose to 95.1 compared to 93.5 in June 2016, showcasing significant improvement in US consumer sentiment.

The US Consumer Sentiment Index data is compiled by the University of Michigan and Thomson Reuters and is updated every month. The Survey Research Center conducts the underlying survey, which includes at least 500 telephone interviews with a cross section of consumers in the US.

Investors should pay attention to recent trends in consumer sentiment because they reflect consumers’ views towards economic prospects.

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What could it mean for the auto sector?

The chart above highlights an uptrend in the US Consumer Sentiment Index. The index is in a strong trend and is near its highest level since February 2004. Interestingly, the index fell to 87.2 in October 2016 but rose to a high of 98.5 in January 2017.

In 2016, major automakers (FXD) including General Motors (GM), Ford (F), Toyota (TM), and Fiat Chrysler (FCAU) benefitted from the positive trend in US auto sales.

A higher Consumer Sentiment Index is considered positive for the future of auto sales, so it could keep auto investors’ hopes alive that auto sales could go higher in the future.

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