NEW YORK: Consumer confidence levels have reached a new low in the US, falling to 37.7 in January from 38.6 in December, and down on the total of 87.3 recorded in the first month in 2007, according to figures from The Conference Board.

Based on a survey of 5,000 households, The Conference Board also found that only 10% of Americans expect their salaries to increase in the near future, down 2.7% on December's total.

Lynn Franco, a director of The Conference Board's Consumer Research Center, gloomily observes: "Consumers have begun the New Year with the same degree of pessimism that they exhibited in the final months of 2008."

New figures from Standard & Poor's also report that house prices fell by 18.2% year-on-year in twenty US cities in November 2008, with record declines being posted in eleven of these areas.

Further data from the Labor Department show that unemployment is now over 9% in cities within the states of Michigan, Rhode Island, South Carolina, California, Nevada and Oregon.

Data sourced from USA Today; additional content by WARC staff