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Consumers Prepare to Spend on Tech as Holiday Shopping Approaches

Shawn DuBravac, Ph.D., Staff Economist, Consumer Technology Association

The latest data released by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) shows consumer confidence toward technology spending in September continues to track at elevated sentiment levels this year. Decreasing only slightly to reach 90.2, the CEA Index of Consumer Technology Expectations (ICTE) suggests strong interest in newly released products from industry giants this month which appear to be having a positive effect on consumer attitudes toward tech spending, in general.
Moreover, expectations for solid growth in overall consumer spending over the back half of the year should support spending on tech and indicates optimism for the holiday selling season (FYI: results of CEA’s Annual Holiday Sales and Forecast Study will be released next week at CEA Innovate!).

[And ICYMI: Using CEA’s market research, I recently provided some insight into those new product announcements and their corresponding emerging categories, here: What We Know About Apple’s New Product Announcements Thanks to CEA Market Research]

Economic sentiment was little changed in September but headwinds still exist for the overall economy. The CEA Index of Consumer Expectations (ICE), which measures consumer expectations about the broader economy, decreased by 3.8 points from last month to reach 168.7 in September. Geopolitical uncertainties are starting to weigh on consumer sentiment in Europe and while they don’t appear to be having a major impact on sentiment in the U.S. yet, the risk is certainly there. Consumer finances continue to strengthen, while the housing market remaining the most evident weakness in the overall economy right now.

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