US Consumer Confidence Rises In June To 81.4%, Far Better Than Expected

 @MalikFromLA
on June 25 2013 10:30 AM
Consumers
Despite June's dip, the nearly year-long uptrend in consumer sentiment remains intact -- a positive sign for the U.S. economy. Reuters/Keith Bedford

U.S. consumer confidence rose to 81.4 in June from May's 74.3 level, reaching its highest level since January 2008 and topping economists' forecast of 75.2, the Conference Board said Tuesday.

The board's Present Situation Index increased to 69.2 from the previous month's 66.7, while its Expectations Index improved to 89.5 from 80.6 the month before. Despite the increase, the index remains well below its long-term average of 92.

"Consumers are considerably more positive about current business and labor market conditions than they were at the beginning of the year," Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at the Conference Board, said. "Expectations have also improved considerably over the past several months, suggesting that the pace of growth is unlikely to slow in the short term and may even moderately pick up."

The board said that consumers' appraisal of the job market was also more positive. Those claiming jobs are "plentiful" increased to 11.7 percent from 9.9 percent, while those claiming jobs are "hard to get" edged up to 36.9 percent from 36.4 percent.

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