The latest release of the Money Anxiety Index shows an increase in the level of consumers’ financial anxiety. May’s index at 91.9 (January 1975 = 100), reflects a 0.6 point increase over April of this year, and a 3.7 point increase from the same month last year. The higher the Money Anxiety Index, the higher the anxiety level. The latest increase in the index suggests that consumers are very anxious about their finances and about the prospects of economic recovery, said Dan Geller, chief research officer for the index.
May 2011 was the third consecutive month the anxiety index trended upwards. In the past 50 years, when the index increased for five or more consecutive months, it was an indication of a looming recession
“Based on historical trends, there is a very high probability that we will enter a double dip recession,” said Geller, “provided that consumers’ financial anxiety level will remain at the current level or higher in the next few months.”