About the Survey

The representativeness of the California Consumer Sentiment Index is ensured by its being constructed from a random sample of 500 people stratified on the basis of age, gender, ethnicity, income, and zip code.  The survey questions ask respondents seven questions concerning their current situation, perceived future prospects, and spending plans.  People are asked to assess whether they see their financial situation getting better or worse over the coming year and how this is linked to their perception of recent business conditions both in Los Angeles and in the nation as a whole.  They are also asked directly whether they think their chances of finding a new job are likely to improve over the coming year and whether they think the next year would be a good time, or a bad time, to buy a new car. The first quarterly survey was done in the second quarter of 2015 and has proceeded quarterly since, providing a baseline of data upon which to build.

Cameron Shelton
Director of the Lowe Institute of Political Economy
McMahon Family Associate Professor of Political Economy
Claremont McKenna College

Marc Weidenmier
Director of the Los Angeles Consumer Sentiment Index
Professor of Finance and Economics
Chapman University

About the Lowe Institute of Political Economy

Founded in 1986 by Robert J. Lowe, the Lowe Institute at Claremont McKenna College offers a variety of programs to provide learning opportunities for students outside the classroom including: a faculty-student research program, a public lecture series and a public policy focus on economic forecasting. The Institute strives to enhance existing curricula and provide emphasis on public affairs and the attendant concentration in economics and government. The mission of the Lowe Institute is to promote undergraduate education in economics and to enhance the public visibility of the College and its sister institutions.

About Claremont McKenna College

Claremont McKenna College, one of the nation’s top liberal arts colleges, prepares students to make a difference. The College educates students for thoughtful and productive lives and roles of responsible leadership through its strong, real-world mission. Admission to the College is need-blind and emphasizes the demonstration of leadership accomplishments. The College attracts a student body that is broadly diverse and accomplished beyond the classroom.

Located on a scenic, tree-lined residential campus 30 miles east of Los Angeles, Claremont McKenna is a member of The Claremont Colleges, a seven-college consortium modeled after Oxford University. CMC students choose from more than 2,200 classes and participate in co-curricular activities with 7,000 other students at Harvey Mudd College, Pitzer College, Pomona College, and Scripps College, as well as the Claremont Graduate University and Keck Graduate Institute. Students have the best of both worlds: the intimacy of a small residential college with small classes and a student-faculty ratio of nine to one, and the shared resources of a larger research university.

Renowned for expertise in economics and government, Claremont McKenna features accomplished scholars who are committed teachers in the humanities, sciences, and social sciences.  The school is distinguished by eleven world-class research institutes. Exceptionally high numbers of undergraduate students conduct research with professors and get to know them as colleagues.

The College emphasizes the integration of leadership and innovation experience within institutes, student enterprises, on-campus fellowships, and sponsored off-campus internships.

More than 90% of students complete internships and nearly half study off-campus during their four years. The College’s Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum brings world-class leaders, thinkers, artists, and visionaries to speak publicly, engage in small group discussions, and dine with students. Consistently one of the top NCAA Division III programs in the nation, the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps athletic department is housed in the state-of-the-art Roberts Pavilion fitness and event center.

CMC’s Student Opportunity Center provides all students with advising, mentoring and networking support that is tailored to each student’s professional goals. Many Claremont McKenna graduates go on to receive prestigious post-graduate fellowships and degrees in business, law, medicine, and many other fields. CMC alumni thrive in a wide range of careers including consulting, education, financial services, government and public policy, media and entertainment, medicine, nonprofit leadership, science, and technology.  Claremont McKenna excels nationally in post-graduate job placement and satisfaction, salaries, and career success.