New York, NY -- (SBWIRE) -- 08/20/2013 -- As confidence among families increased to its strongest level in six years, consumer sentiment improved in late June, ending the month close to a near six-year high set in May, a survey released on Friday showed.
Michael Zimmerman, CEO of Prentice Capital Management, LP, believes today's shoppers are stretched thin. Having ridden the peak of home refinance plus housing benefits during the last 12-24 months, these are usually taking a rigorous view of government economic policy and feeling the crunch of increased prices, taxation and lowered confidence in the job market.
The Conference Board, a New York-based private research group, said Tuesday that its consumer confidence index jumped to 81.4 in June. This is the greatest reading since January 2008. And it is up from May's reading of 74.3, which was revised slightly downward from 76.2.
Zimmerman's view is the fact that internet shopping will consistently take share, the development of tablets and much larger smartphone as the most current frontier of business is quickening the online vs. bricks and mortar struggle, and introducing an opportunity for shareholders with brands which are profiting from such types of shifts.
Regardless of the watchful outlook, Zimmerman is enlarging his equity holdings in retailers Coldwater Creek, Pacific Sunwear of dELiA*s, California and Gaiam, according to Securities and Exchange Commission filings. Zimmerman believes retailers with powerful brands who also combine ecommerce into their web strategy create the most robust opportunity for growth by targeting careful consumers looking for ways to keep lifestyle choices at lower price.
Consumers' confidence in the economy is observed closely because their spending accounts for about 70 percent of U.S. economic activity.
The report shows consumers are more positive about current economic conditions and have a more optimistic view of the market and job market within the following six months.
The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan's final reading on the complete index on consumer sentiment was 84.1 points, only marginally below a near six year high of 84.5 in May. The late June figure was higher than the preliminary reading of 82.7.
Rising home costs are also likely making Americans feel wealthier and much more confident about spending.
Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at the Conference Board, said that "implies the rate of growth is not likely to slow in the short-term, and might even relatively pick up."
"Consumers consider the (economic) recovery has achieved an upward momentum which will not be easily reversed," survey manager Richard Curtin said in a statement.
It was above an early June reading of 92.1 and economists' prognosis of 92.8.
About HedgeUP Fund News
HedgeUP Fund News is an independent online news publisher serving institutional investors and wealth managers and their investment managers and advisers across all asset classes by covering the hedge fund stories and their managers. Its independent journalists that hail from a financial background bring integrity and insight into every story. For more information, visit: http://www.hedgeup.com