TN Consumer Confidence Highest Since MTSU Began Study

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(MURFREESBORO) Tennessee Consumers are positive on local economy. In fact, an MTSU study shows that this state's Consumer Outlook Index rose to 254 from 214 in September, the highest level for the index since its inception in 2015. This indicate consumers are more willing to open their wallets and purses this holiday shopping season.

"Any potential fears related to possible negative effects of tariffs and a trade war with China, or of a future recession, or negative effects of continued impeachment proceedings do not appear to have a significant effect on consumers' outlook," said Dr. Tim Graeff, marketing professor and director of the Office of Consumer Research.

The current online survey of 630 Tennessee consumers was conducted Dec. 4-9, 2019, and has an error margin of 4 percent. To see the full report and previous reports, go to https://www.mtsu.edu/consumer/tnoutlookreports.php.

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Survey results showed increases in all three components of the index -- current situation index, future expectations index, and purchasing index. By region, Middle Tennessee consumers continue to have a more positive overall outlook, followed by consumers in East and West Tennessee respectively.

"This suggests Tennessee consumers have increasingly more positive views of the current economy, are more optimistic about the future economy, and increasingly view now as a good time to make large purchases," Dr. Graeff noted.

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"Overall, this is very good news for Tennessee businesses and retailers. Improving views of the economy and increasing optimism regarding personal finances and investments have contributed to a growing sense that now is a good time for consumer spending. This is important as we enter the ever-important Christmas and holiday spending season."

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Dr. Tim Graeff, MTSU, Murfreesboro, Office of Consumer Research, Tennessee Consumer Index, WGNS
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