Consumer Confidence Increases, Back-To-Back Monthly Gains Spell Good News

Consumer Confidence Increases, Back-To-Back Monthly Gains Spell Good News

The Consumer Confidence Index is up and that should spell good news for your import repair business.

The Consumer Confidence Index is up and that should spell good news for your ­import repair business. Posting another gain in May, standing at 76.2 (up from 69.0 in April), consumer confidence is now at a five-year high.

Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at The Conference Board, said “Consumers’ assessment of current business and labor-market conditions was more positive, and they were considerably more upbeat about future economic and job prospects. Back-to-back monthly gains suggest that consumer confidence is on the mend and may be regaining the traction it lost due to the fiscal cliff, payroll-tax hike and sequester.”

Consumers’ appraisal of present-day conditions also improved in May, according to The Conference Board. Those saying business conditions are “good” increased to 18.8% from 17.5%, while those stating business conditions are “bad” decreased to 26% from 27.6%.

Those expecting business conditions to ­improve over the next six months increased to 19.2% from 17.2%. Consumers’ outlook for the labor market was also more upbeat, with those expecting more jobs in the months ahead improving to 16.8% from 14.3%.

So, here’s the takeaway:

• As consumer confidence ­increases, their deferral rate for vehicle maintenance should ­decrease.

• Correspondingly, consumers’ attitudes toward funding necessary vehicle repairs should improve.

• The number of customers who value a maintenance plan should increase, as should your ­average number of repair orders. Take the time to educate your customers that simple changes to their car care regimen can prevent larger-ticket repairs down the road.

• You have the opportunity to help maintain your customers’ vehicles for peak performance, and the resulting positive repair experience will provide plentiful word-of-mouth referrals for your shop. 

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