Advisor confidence in the economy and the stock market declined in February.

Rydex-SGI AdvisorBenchmarking’s monthly Advisor Confidence Index, which gauges advisor views on the U.S. economy and stock market, fell nearly 2% to 107.18 from a month earlier.

Advisors said that the index, which had improved in January, retreated slightly in February, as the U.S. economy showed a lack of job growth.

“While the fundamentals of the U.S. economy may improve over the next several months into summer, the lack of job growth will continue to be both a psychological and material drag on the economy overall,” said George Cheatham, an advisor with American Financial Consultants Inc.

Last month, Rockville, Md., based Rydex also surveyed advisors on which areas of the economy cause them the greatest concern this year. Sixty-five percent of advisors said that they are most concerned about unemployment, and the budget deficit (50%) is the second biggest concern.

“Structural challenges remain daunting, but the cyclical rebound appears intact,” said James Dailey an advisor at TEAM Financial Managers. “The recent correction is likely to usher in the secondary phase of the cyclical recovery in the financial markets. We continue to position for commodity-related industries to assume market leadership. Energy, precious metals and agriculture remain areas of focus.”

The index was released Monday.

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