FL Consumer Confidence Flatlines
(AP) Florida's overall consumer confidence level is little changed in January from the previous month, while nationally, consumer confidence plunged.
University of Florida researchers said Tuesday that the state rating increased by five points for low-income residents while dropping by seven points among wealthier Floridians.
Overall Florida consumer confidence dropped just a point to 75 in January. That's on a scale of 2 to 150 benchmarked to 1966 at a value of 100.
Chris McCarty, who directs the monthly survey, said low-income and wealthy individuals likely are reacting differently to the actions that Congress took to avoid the so-called "fiscal cliff."
While Congress put off major action on spending cuts, it did raise taxes on incomes exceeding $400,000.
Congress also repealed a payroll tax cut, but McCarty said it may take consumers longer to notice that change.
Across the country, consumer confidence plunged in January to its lowest level in more than a year, reflecting higher Social Security taxes that left Americans with less take-home pay.
The Conference Board said Tuesday that its consumer confidence index dropped to 58.6 in January. That's down from 66.7 in December and the lowest since November 2011.
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