Summertime blues? By one measure, Americans are the least confident in the economy in four years. The numbers: A measure of how Americans view the strength of the economy fell to the lowest level in almost three years, reflecting growing worries about the U.S. trade war with China that’s led to higher and higher tariffs. The final consumer sentiment survey fell to 89.8 in August from an early estimate of 92.3 and a 98.4 reading in July, the University of Michigan said Friday.
It’s the lowest mark since October 2016. Just a year and a half ago, the index hit 101.4 to mark the highest level since 2004. What happened: The sharp decline in consumer sentiment stemmed from increasingly negative views of the one-third of respondents that brought up the tariffs on their own. They worry the dispute will increase inflation, reduce incomes and raise unemployment. Many Americans still don’t appear to be fazed by the trade fight, however. Another closely followed measure of attitudes known as consumer confidence remained near an 19-high in August. Part of the divergence reflects differences in the surv
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