U.S. consumer confidence tumbled this month as Americans began to worry that economic growth will moderate next year. But consumer spirits are still high by historic standards.
The Conference Board, a business research group, said its consumer confidence index fell to 128.1 in December, down from 136.4 in November and to its lowest level since July.
The index measures consumers' assessment of current economic conditions and their outlook for the next six months. Both fell in December. Consumers' expectations for the future dropped to the lowest level in more than two years.
The U.S. economy is healthy. Unemployment is the lowest in nearly five decades. But the Federal Reserve has gradually been raising interest rates, financial markets have been volatile and global growth is slowing.