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Consumer Confidence Bounces Back in Nebraska
Nebraska Ag Connection - 06/13/2019

Consumer confidence rebounded in Nebraska during May and business confidence improved further, according to the latest monthly surveys from the Bureau of Business Research at the University of Nebraska--Lincoln.

Responses to the May Survey of Nebraska Households indicate that consumer confidence rose to 105.3 during the month, above the neutral level of 100 and well above the April value of 95.6.

Nebraska business confidence stood at 113.2 in May, based on responses to the monthly Survey of Nebraska Business. This is well above the neutral value of 100 and up from a reading of 107.8 in April.

"The May rebound in consumer confidence suggests that the depressed April value was a temporary phenomenon," said Eric Thompson, an economist and bureau director. "The drop in April confidence could have reflected a reaction to severe flooding in Nebraska."

Nineteen percent of responding households indicated that taxes are their top financial issue, while 16% chose a general increase in the cost of living, including the cost of groceries, utilities, insurance and education. Thirty percent of businesses chose customer demand as their top business issue. However, as in most recent months, competition in the product and labor markets also were top concerns. Twenty-one percent of businesses chose labor availability as their top concern and 18% chose competition with other businesses. Four percent of responding businesses reported flooding or weather as their top issue.

The surveys are sent each month to 500 randomly selected Nebraska businesses and households. During May, 92 businesses responded to the Survey of Nebraska Business, for a response rate of 19%. There were 141 responses to the Survey of Nebraska Households, for a response rate of 28%.

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