U.S. consumer confidence rises in June

Consumer confidence increased in June as consumers became more optimistic about current business and labor market conditions, according to The Conference Board.

The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index rose to 81.4 in June from 74.3 in May. A reading of 90 or higher indicates a healthy economy.

The index measures how shoppers feel about business conditions, the job market and the next six months. Economists watch the index closely because consumer spending accounts for about 70 percent of economic activity and is a crucial part of a strong rebound.

Those expecting business conditions to improve during the next six months rose to 20.3 percent from 18.7 percent, and those expecting business conditions to worsen decreased from 12.2 percent to 11.4 percent.

Additionally, 19.6 percent expect more jobs during the next six months compared with 16.3 percent in May. Those expecting fewer jobs decreased from 20 percent to 16.1 percent.

"Consumer confidence increased for the third consecutive month and is now at its highest level since January 2008," says Lynn Franco, The Conference Board's director of economic indicators. "Consumers are considerably more positive about current business and labor market conditions than they were at the beginning of the year. Expectations also have improved considerably during the past several months, suggesting that the pace of growth is unlikely to slow in the short-term and may even moderately pick up."

Date : 7/15/2013