Consumer News & Views
In this Issue…
- Consumer Confidence Slips in
May for Second Month in a Row.
- ACC Supports Fallen Heroes
Fund for U.S. Military Traumatic Brain Injury Research.
- ACC’s Friend of the Consumer Award Recognizes
- Apply for the 2017 Green CSM
- ACC Annual Meeting Scheduled.
Consumer Confidence Slips in May for Second Straight Decline.
The Conference Board reported that its Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) decline
slightly in May. The Index slipped to 117.9 from 119.4 in April and marked a
decline for the second straight month. This economic indicator measures present
and future consumer confidence in the economy and in income stability. The CCI
is arguably one of the most important economic indicators as it influences the
decisions of investors, manufacturers, retailers, banks and government agencies.
Typically, a higher CCI suggests people will spend money, while a lower CCI
suggests people will save or have less money to spend.
The CCI has risen steadily since 2008. At the end of 2016, the CCI reached a
13-year high of 113.7, its highest reading since December 2003. This surge
continued into 2017, reaching 124.9 in March. However, continued delays on
economic policy have more recently reduced consumer confidence. The CCI fell to
120.3 in April, marking its first decline since inauguration day. It’s unclear
whether this drop in May signals a trend for the months ahead.
As consumer spending represents the largest contributor to gross domestic
product (GDP), changes in consumer confidence can significantly affect
manufacturer production schedules, housing starts, bank loan interest rates and
more. These changes ultimately affect consumers who tend to spend less when
times are uncertain.
ACC Supports Fallen Heroes Fund for U.S. Military
Traumatic Brain Injury Research and Treatment.
The American Consumer Council has
announced its support for the Intrepid’s Fallen Heroes Fund to support research
and treatment for America’s military men and women suffering from traumatic
brain injuries (TBI) and requiring Psychological Health treatment (PH). The
non-profit fund, which has raised nearly $200 million to support America’s
military men and women who have suffered serious injuries in combat, is an
outgrowth of the famous Intrepid Museum, which preserves the World War II
aircraft carrier and serves as a popular museum in New York City’s Hudson River.
The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund is a
leader in supporting the men and women of the Armed Forces and their families.
Begun in 2000 and established as an independent, not-for-profit organization in
2003, the Fund has provided nearly $200 million in support for the families of
military personnel lost in service to our nation, and for severely wounded
military personnel and veterans. These efforts are funded entirely with
donations from the public, and hundreds of thousands of individuals have
contributed to the Fund.
Consumers who want to support the Fund may
contribute directly at:
https://www.fallenheroesfund.org/Donate.aspx. All proceeds go directly to
the Fund and are tax-deductible. For more information on the Fallen Heroes
Fund’s important programs and services , please read below or visit their
Here’s how this excellent charity supports
America’s military men and women:
From 2000 to 2005 the Fund provided close to $20 million to families of
United States and British military personnel lost in performance of their duty,
mostly in service in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Fund provided unrestricted grants
to each spouse and dependent child; and to parents of unmarried service members.
The payments were coordinated with the casualty offices of the Armed Forces, to
ensure all eligible families received these benefits. In 2005 federal
legislation substantially increased the benefits granted to these families. With
that mission accomplished, the Fund redirected its support toward the severely
The Center for the Intrepid
In January 2007 the Fund completed construction of the Center for the Intrepid,
a $55 million world-class state-of-the-art physical rehabilitation center at
Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas. The Center serves military
personnel who have been catastrophically disabled in operations in Iraq and
Afghanistan, and veterans severely injured in other operations and in the normal
performance of their duties. The 60,000 square foot Center provides ample space
and facilities for the rehabilitation needs of the patients and their
caregivers. It includes modern physical rehabilitation equipment and extensive
indoor and outdoor facilities.
National Intrepid Center of Excellence
Following the opening of the Center for the Intrepid, the Fund turned toward
another critical issue faced by our wounded troops: the treatment of Traumatic
Brain Injury (TBI). The Fund addressed this need by constructing the National
Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE). NICoE is a 72,000 square foot, two-story
facility located on the Navy campus at Bethesda, Maryland, adjacent to the new
Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, with close access to the Uniformed
Services University, the National Institutes of Health, and the Veterans Health
Administration. NICoE provides the most advanced services for advanced
diagnostics, initial treatment plan and family education, introduction to
therapeutic modalities, referral and reintegration support for military
personnel and veterans with TBI and psychological health conditions. Further,
NICoE conducts research, tests new protocols and provides comprehensive training
and education to patients, providers and families while maintaining ongoing
telehealth follow-up care with patients across the country and throughout the
world. NICoE was dedicated on June 24th, 2010 and has now begun its critically
In 2013 the Fund launched a new campaign to extend the care provided at NICoE to
more service members suffering TBI and psychological health conditions. The Fund
will build up to nine “Intrepid Spirit” centers at major military bases around
the country. These centers will act as satellites to the central NIcoE facility
and will allow urgently-needed care to be brought to more troops and closer to
home. Construction of all nine centers will cost $100 million. The first five
centers are now in operation and the sixth is now under construction. Raising
the remaining funds will guarantee that additional centers can be built and put
into operation to support our wounded heroes in uniform.
ACC’s Friend of the Consumer Award Recognizes
Is your business consumer-friendly? Does your
business deserve greater recognition for its service to consumers? If so, you
should apply for the American Consumer Council’s Friend of the Consumer Award.
Now is the time to apply!
Throughout the year, ACC presents its "Friend of
the Consumer" Awards. This prestigious award recognizes manufacturers,
retailers, and other businesses that produce or sell products in the United
States that meet or exceed federally-mandated standards and are touted by
consumers as “consumer friendly.”
Each year, ACC awards numerous "Friend of the
Consumer" Awards to deserving companies and organizations because they have
"demonstrated a commitment to American consumers by providing a specific product
or service that fosters consumer confidence and market acceptance."
To apply for the "Friend of the Consumer" Award,
complete the online application and return it to ACC with the application fee.
Applicants will be notified within 5 days of receipt of their application.
Thereafter, a panel of independent judges will review your application and make
a formal recommendation within 20 days of receipt of your award application.
For more information, visit:
Certification Accepting Applications for 2017 Summer Cycle:
If your company or organization would like to
increase its credibility with consumers, you should consider applying for the
Green CSM Certification.
Applications for the 2017 Summer cycle are now being accepted through June 30,
It's a proven fact that consumers want to do
business with companies that are eco-friendly and practice Corporate Social
Responsibility (CSR). The process is straight-forward and all applicants are
recognized by ACC and the Green USA Institute.
All applicants complete the criteria and submit
their responses to ACC's Green Consumer Council for review, assessment and
feedback. Program details and the Green CSM
Certification criteria can be viewed at ACC's website located at:
ACC Annual Meeting Scheduled for Friday, June 16, 2017.
The American Consumer Council will hold
its annual membership and business meeting on Friday, June 16, 2017 at 10:00 am
at The Lodge at Torrey Pines located in La Jolla, CA. The meeting is open to all
members of ACC. For more information, please contact ACC’s meeting department at
The Lodge at Torrey Pines, La Jolla, CA