Consumer Sentiment Declined in August: Fannie

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Consumer expectations about the health of the housing market worsened over the summer, according to data released Monday by Fannie Mae.

The government-sponsored enterprise said the share of consumers who viewed the market as favorable for buying a home dipped to an all-time low of 63% in August, or three percentage points lower than the previous month. The share of consumers who said it was a good time to sell a home fell five percentage points, to 38%.

“The deterioration in consumer attitudes about the current home-buying environment reflects a shift away from record home purchase affordability without enough momentum in consumer personal financial sentiment to compensate for it,” said Doug Duncan, chief economist at Fannie Mae, in a press release Monday.

Survey respondents, at the same time, expressed optimism about their personal finances. The share of respondents who expect their financial situation to improve in the next year increased by four percentage points, to 44%.

The Fannie Mae poll included 1,000 consumers who were interviewed over the phone.

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