Consumer confidence in Utah took a big dive this month according to the Zions Bank Consumer Attitude Index report on consumer spending. Randy Shumway, CEO of the Cicero Group, says the consumer attitude index fell more than 11 points, which he attributes to Utah favorite Mitt Romney losing the Presidential election.
"You saw a really divisive campaign season. People weren’t agnostic about the election; they saw a real difference in the two candidates. And Utahns overwhelmingly supported Mitt Romney. And for the subsequent week or two after the election there was real discouragement and pessimism surrounding, what the future is for the next four years."
Utah’s consumer confidence suffered the largest decline in the 22-month history of the index, while the national index rose less than a point. Shumway says nationally spending was up 13% over the holiday weekend compared to the same time last year, with more than 247-million Americans spending approximately $59 billion.
"So long as pessimism surrounding the compromises required to solving this fiscal cliff that we are encountering at the beginning of next year, so long as that doesn’t dampen pessimism we will continue to see an acceleration in consumer spending this holiday season."
Shumway says he does expect consumer attitudes in Utah to recover. Meanwhile confidence in Utah’s business and employment conditions decreased this month by nearly 7 points, compared to a national decrease of 1 point.