Arvest Newsroom

Regional Economic Sentiment on the Rise
Arvest-Backed Survey Shows Consumers Feeling More Confident

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (Nov. 18, 2014) – Regional consumer opinion regarding the economy is on an uptick, according to the Fall 2014 Arvest Consumer Sentiment Survey released today.

The current regional index is 72.6, up from June's inaugural index of 71.4. That number, however, still trails the national index as reported by Thomson Reuters and the University of Michigan. The national index was 86.9 for October, up from 82.5 in June.

Of the three states included in the Arvest Consumer Sentiment Survey, Missouri showed the biggest change, with its index jumping from 68.6 to 77.4. Arkansas showed a modest gain, from 67.4 to 68.1, while Oklahoma was the only state to show a decline, from 76.4 to 72.6.

"We've been eager since our initial survey was released a few months ago to learn how consumers' opinions evolve," Arvest Bank Marketing Director Jason Kincy said. "These latest results seem to indicate consumers are gaining confidence not just in the regional economy, but their personal financial situations, too. Getting a glimpse of that optimism through these results helps us know how to help anticipate and facilitate the financial needs of consumers."

The Arvest Consumer Sentiment Survey is conducted by the Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER) in the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas. The University of Oklahoma’s Public Opinion Learning Laboratory conducted the 1,200 phone surveys. CBER, Missouri State University and Oklahoma City University provided state data analysis.

The survey is conducted twice a year, with the next survey expected to be completed in May 2015. With each study, the index score will be released first, followed by additional information regarding specifics of consumer outlook for the near future and plans for savings and spending.

Information about the survey, copies of this release, summary documents and print-ready logos can be found at: www.arvestconsumersurvey.com.

About Arvest Bank

Arvest Bank operates more than 270 bank branches in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas through a network of 16 locally managed banks, each with its own board of directors and management team. These banks serve customers in 120 communities with 12-hour weekday banking at most locations. Arvest also provides a wide range of banking services including loans, deposits, treasury management, credit cards, mortgage loans and mortgage servicing. Arvest is an equal housing lender and member FDIC.

About Our Research Partners

The Center for Business and Economic Research, Sam M. Walton School of Business at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville (CBER) provides excellence in applied economic and business research to federal, state and local government, as well as to businesses currently operating or those that desire to operate in the state of Arkansas. The center further works to improve the economic opportunities of all Arkansans by conducting policy research in the public interest.

The University of Oklahoma Public Opinion Learning Laboratory (POLL) serves two functions: to provide a learning environment for the teaching of survey design, public opinion research and data analysis for the purpose of developing student capabilities to conduct academic and professional research and analysis; and to conduct research on public opinion, in order to foster knowledge about public affairs and to assist in the conduct of research on public policy of import to state and local governments, media organizations, other public and private entities, and the general public.

The Meinders School of Business (MSB) at Oklahoma City University, which includes the Steven C. Agee Economic Research & Policy Institute, offers a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional development programs. MSB prepares graduate and undergraduate students to be socially responsible leaders in a global economy through teaching excellence and faculty scholarship in business practice and the disciplines. Faculty and students engage with the business community, local government and regulatory agencies as part of the teaching-learning process.

The Bureau of Economic Research, housed within the Economics Department at Missouri State University, serves as a clearinghouse for data and publications on economic conditions within the region, state and nation. The staff has a wide variety of experience and is able to provide consulting services, produce detailed GIS maps, economic and industry forecasts and other relevant reports.