U.S. consumers’ confidence hit a fresh 14-year high this month, as lower-income households reported feeling more optimistic about the economy.
The University of Michigan on Friday said the preliminary result of its consumer-sentiment index was 102.0 in March, up from 99.7 in February. That was the highest level since January 2004, and well above the 99.0 economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal had expected.
The number of food stamp dependent Americans hit a six-year low in President Donald Trump’s first year in office, reflecting an improving economy and falling unemployment, according to a U.S. Agriculture Department (USDA) report.
An average of 42.2 million Americans participated in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) program in 2017, which is an 11 percent decrease from 2013, when a record number of people used food stamps, according to USDA.
“Federal spending for SNAP totaled $68.0 billion or 4 percent less than in the previous fiscal year,” USDA reported. “This was also 15 percent less than the historical high of $79.9 billion set in FY 2013.”
Larry Kudlow, picked to be President Trump’s new economic adviser, has privately told the White House that the nation’s economy is on the verge of 4 percent to 5 percent growth, or more than double the last decade.
In a recent gathering with Trump, he said that many firms held back investing until the tax reform package passed and “some of that is already showing up.”
What’s more, he told the president, “We’re on the front end of the biggest investment boom in probably 30 to 40 years.” The president responded, “Well, I couldn’t have said it any better.” …