May 3, 2018 12:00 PM, EDT

Higher Gas Prices Push US Consumer Comfort to Seven-Week Low

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Rising prices at the gas pump helped drive U.S. household sentiment to a seven-week low at the end of April, the Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index showed May 3.

Highlights of Consumer Comfort for the Week Ended April 29

• Weekly comfort index dropped to 56.5 from 57.5; down 1.6 points in past two weeks, the most since October.

• Personal finances measure fell to 63.3 from 64.3, the third straight decline.

• Comfort index of buying climate decreased to 48.6 from 50.2 Gauge tracking views of the economy eased to 57.6 from 57.9.

Key Takeaways

Confidence took another step back just two weeks after reaching a 17-year high, with Americans now paying the most for a gallon of gasoline since November 2014.

Costlier fill-ups leave less to spend on other goods and services, helping explain the largest decline in the buying-climate index since September.

At the same time, the measure of consumer comfort is in line with this year’s average.

Other Details

• Comfort index for those in the West slumped 2.9 points, the most since October, while sentiment in the Northeast declined for a third week.

• Confidence weakened among most income groups.