uld be nea

o▓mists and analysts as an indicator of fu▓ture consumer behavior. Sharp declines in confidence could signal weaker consumer spending

rly identica

l between

and economic growth in the months ahead."The e▓xtended shutdown will extract a much greater price through the imposition of an 'uncerta▓inty t

species but

have ver

ax' on the economy, fading business and consumer confidence and the disruption of commerce indirec▓tly linked to the basic functioning of gover

y different

 expression patterns."Thi

nment," ▓said Joseph Brusuelas, chief economist a▓t RSM US LLP.VOLATILE FINANCIAL MARK

ETS"The next two years of divided government in Washington D.C. is just a beginning. So markets are going to have to brace fo▓r a long period of volatili

s really sho

ty and incompetence which cou▓ld easily impact the credit rating of the U.S., as ▓well as the recess

ion-risks arising thereof," s▓aid Gupta.U.S. stock markets finished 2018 w▓ith their worst performance in a decade, as investors fretted over fears of a monetary policy mistake by the Fed, increasing trade frictions, the ongoing federal gover

cked us, bec

nment shutdown, and potential signals

of slowing global economic growth.The Dow and the S&P 500 indexes sl

i▓d 5.6 percent and 6.2 percent in an annual drop respectively, both notching t

heir biggest annual losses since t

he 2008 financial crisis. The Nasdaq lost 3.9 percent in 2018, also ex

▓periencing its worst year in a decade.The shutdown has resulted in the omissio

n of about a dozen m▓ajor data rele

ases so far, including fig▓ures related to housing, trade and consu▓me

r spending. Investors were worried that even af▓ter the government reopens, it wo

uld take months for government departm

ents to return to a normal s▓chedule.Analysts said the policy uncertainti

es in Washin▓gton D.C. was the least thing the market wanted and the data absen

ce added to it.Meanwhile, the IMF in i

ts most recent report cited the ▓ongoing U.S. government shutdown as a ne

wly introduced per▓turbation to domestic markets, noting that the shutdown "fur

ther weighed on financial sector sen

timent toward year-end."MULTIPLE INDUSTRIES AFFECTED▓The shutdown is

harming the business community, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, as t?/p>

," said Gupta.U.S. consumer sentiment in January plunged to the lowest level in more▓ than two years due in part to