According to Prosper Analytics and Insights, consumer confidence fell in August, two points on its scale, to 37.8, putting it above the figure for August of last year but generally lower than the sentiment expressed in 2013 surveys the market research firm has conducted. Prosper noted, however, that the August score was the second highest for the month since the recession.
Consumers continue to focus on practical, need-based purchasing, but that trend has remained stable even showed some evidence of declining slightly, particularly in the vacation month of August. Still, that is unlikely to lead to a surge in consumer spending on back to school. Consumers responding to the Prosper survey said they will spend less this year than last on back to school— $632 versus $689— but the 2013 figure is the second highest in since 2008, the market research firm maintained.
Prosper pointed out that about one out of three consumers 18 years of age and older shop for back to school.