This week, new data revealed that U.S. consumer confidence hit a 17-year high.
The report outlined that people’s optimism rose about business conditions, incomes, and stock prices. The report also noted that buying plans for homes, major appliances, and new cars increased—another sign of optimism and a healthy, growing economy.
It’s no coincidence that this rising economic optimism comes on the heels of Americans seeing bigger paychecks in February, thanks to the new withholding tables the IRS put into place because of tax reform.
That’s not all of the good news from the week. Today, the Labor Department revealed that U.S. filings for unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest level in 49 years. Yes, you read that correctly—almost five decades. This kind of labor market incentivizes employers to keep their staff happy so they don't leave, especially since there is already a shortage of qualified workers.
Wait, there's more. The clothing store Carter’s Inc. announced this week that it will shell out $20 million in bonuses to its employees and increase employee retirement plan contributions—thanks to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Mission Produce, an avocado distributor, announced it is giving $1,000 bonus to its employees and a pay raise of $2/hour for their hourly workers. These are just two companies that have joined the chorus of more than 400 companies doling out bonuses and pay increases thanks to tax reform.
It should come as no surprise then that famous investor Warren Buffett praised the new law, calling tax reform a “huge tailwind” for American business.
This is all great news. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, now the law of the land, is helping the economy and improving people’s lives in concrete way. It’s no wonder people have more confidence in the economy.