The Siena Research Institute's latest poll released Monday indicated New York's consumer confidence is at 76.6 percent overall, the highest it's been since the summer of 2007. Both President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger Mitt Romney are closely watching gauges like consumer confidence. Both know winning over voters on the economy will likely translate into victory come November.
As he attended a $40,000 a head Manhattan fundraiser with former President Bill Clinton Monday, President Obama was, no doubt, apprised of New York's fresh consumer confidence numbers. In addition to the overall confidence number rising above 76 percent, the same poll found nearly 6 percent of those surveyed are actively shopping for a new home, up from a low of 2 percent just two years ago. That statistic was no surprise to RE/MAX Associate Broker Amy Petrone. "We have definitely seen a huge increase this year over the past five years," she said.
Petrone noted in May, home sales in her RE/MAX office were up 50 percent from a year ago. Most of her clients own a home and are looking to upgrade. "Overall they're feeling very confident in their situation," she said. "Their jobs are solid, they're feeling good about things, they're not afraid to buy that next home."
Much like Petrone, Denise Peters has built a thriving business through referrals. Peters owns Kitchen Thyme Design Studio in Pittsford. "Last year was a very good year for me and this year is even better," she said.
Peters said business is up 20 percent year over year. Her kitchen remodeling contractors and subs are booked through September. "I told one of the reps that was in the other day I feel like everybody that wasn't doing something in 2008 and 2009 wants to get it done now," she said.
Despite the uptick in consumer confidence, the national unemployment level rose from 8.1 to 8.2 percent in May. Romney has argued that's an indication the President is failing when it comes to the economy.
Over the last month the Dow Jones Industrials have given up all of their 2012 gains. How voters choose to interpret all of the economic data they're presented with, both good and bad, will shape the Presidential race as we head into the fall.