retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Conference Board said yesterday that its March 2009 consumer confidence index was 26.0, up slightly from 25.3 in February but still a long way from the 37.4 recorded in January and the 65.9 registered in March 2008.

There also were slightly mixed signals from consumers. The board’s “Present Situation Index,” which looks at how people feel now, was 21.5, down from 22.3 last month. But the “Expectations” index, which is how they think the economy will fare in the next six months, was up to 28.9 from 27.3 in February.

KC's View:
In other words, nothing has really changed. It’ll be interesting to see how the Obama administration’s approach to General Motors and Chrysler will affect the April numbers.