The Conference Board reported Tuesday that its benchmark consumer survey dipped in September to 79.7, down from 81.8 in August.
The change represents slightly rosier views on current conditions but they were canceled out by a bigger drop in expectations for the near future.
“While overall economic conditions appear to have moderately improved, consumers are uncertain that the momentum can be sustained in the months ahead,” said the Conference Board’s Lynn Franco.
The biggest declines in the survey came regarding expectations for the labor market and future income.
Those anticipating more jobs in the months ahead decreased to 16.9 percent from 17.5 percent, while those anticipating fewer jobs increased to 19.7 percent from 17.2 percent.
Those anticipating higher incomes shrank to 15.4 percent from 17.5 percent.
The shaky economic picture motivated the Federal Reserve to keep up its quantitative easing policy this month and has some economists worried that any prolonged government shutdown or payment default next month due to congressional battles, would cause a recession.