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The Trader's Guide to Key Economic Indicators, 3rd Edition by Richard Yamarone

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CHAPTER 9

Conference Board Consumer Confidence and University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Indexes

“Most, probably, of our decisions to do something positive, the full consequences of which will be drawn out over many days to come, can only be taken as a result of animal spirits—of a spontaneous urge to action rather than inaction, and not as the outcome of a weighted average of quantitative benefits multiplied by quantitative probabilities.” These words—by pioneering economic theorist John Maynard Keynes in his 1936 opus, The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money—may be the first written recognition of the importance of consumer sentiment in economics. The need to quantify these “animal spirits” is the motivating force behind the ...

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