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Fannie Mae: First quarter shows greater consumer confidence

Confidence among consumers was up recently.

Confidence among consumers was up recently.

Fannie Mae's most recent national housing survey revealed mixed emotions from consumers regarding their financial futures. However, the majority had increased confidence during the first quarter of 2011.

Of those polled by Fannie Mae between January and March 2011, 57 believed purchasing property was still the best investment, ahead of 401(k) plans and IRAs. However, confidence in the real estate market and the economy was less pronounced. Thirty-three percent felt the economy has yet to back on the right path, a 4 percent increase from the fourth quarter of 2010. Despite this, 42 percent of respondents felt their personal finances would improve during the next year, which is a 2 percent year-over-year jump.

"Despite moderate signs of improvement in the housing market and the overall economy, consumer attitudes continue to be shaped by ongoing concerns about the recovery and their own financial situations," said vice president and chief economist of Fannie Mae, Doug Duncan.

Furthermore, Duncan believes the uncertainty of the labor market, as well as minimal home price and interest rate movement and higher housing costs, has led to a greater sense of financial instability for consumers.

Despite Duncan's claim, the most recent Clear Capital report found that home prices in several regions of the country experienced a double dip.