MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WMOT) -- Following a sharp drop last fall, consumer confidence is on the rise in Middle Tennessee.
Dr. Tim Graeff directs the Office of Consumer Research at Middle Tennessee State University, and he's just completed his latest quarterly survey of mid-state consumer confidence.
“At the end of January we found an increase in consumers optimism. Consumers do seem to be a little more optimistic. They have little bit more positive outlook on the economy. Not just the current economy, but the future of the economy.”
Graeff says an uptick in confidence would normally mean a corresponding rise in consumer spending, but that may not be the case this time around.
“One of the other questions we asked is about their expectations for spending, and we actually saw a decrease. They actually expect to be spending less this year than they did last year.”
Dr. Graeff says consumers are still worried about losing their jobs and also expect to pay more in taxes this year.
The latest MTSU consumer survey polled 334 Tennesseans living in Davidson, Rutherford and Williamson counties.