University of Michigan's Index of Consumer Sentiment posts preliminary February level of 66.4, up from January's 64.9; high prices weighed on consumers as sentiment remained more than 22% below its historical average

Sample article from our Consumer Wellness

February 10, 2023 (press release) –

Preliminary Results for February 2023

  Feb Jan Feb M-M Y-Y
  2023 2023 2022 Change Change
Index of Consumer Sentiment 66.4 64.9 62.8 +2.3% +5.7%
Current Economic Conditions 72.6 68.4 68.2 +6.1% +6.5%
Index of Consumer Expectations 62.3 62.7 59.4 -0.6% +4.9%


Read our November 18th report, Five Patterns in Consumer Responses to Inflation.
Next data release: Friday, February 24, 2023 for Final February data at 10am ET
Surveys of Consumers Director Joanne Hsu
Consumer sentiment was essentially unchanged at 1.5 index points above January. Recent developments in the economy, both positive and negative, have led to mixed attitudes among consumers with little net change in February. After three consecutive months of increases, sentiment is now 6% above a year ago but still 14% below two years ago, prior to the current inflationary episode. Overall, high prices continue to weigh on consumers despite the recent moderation in inflation, and sentiment remains more than 22% below its historical average since 1978. Combined with concerns over rising unemployment on the horizon, consumers are poised to exercise greater caution with their spending in the months ahead.

Year-ahead inflation expectations rebounded to 4.2% this month, from 3.9% in January and 4.4% in December. Long-run inflation expectations remained at 2.9% for the third straight month and stayed within the narrow 2.9-3.1% range for 18 of the last 19 months. Uncertainty over short-run inflation expectations ticked up recently and continues to be notably elevated (see chart, black solid line), indicating the potential for continued volatility in expected year-ahead inflation. In contrast, uncertainty over long-run inflation receded in recent months, though the uncertainty stands well above averages over the last 20 years (red dotted line).

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