U.S. consumer confidence rises in September

Consumer confidence increased in September as consumers were more optimistic about current conditions, especially the job market, according to The Conference Board.

The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index rose to 70.3 in September from 61.3 in August. 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 critical part of a strong rebound.

Those expecting business conditions to improve during the next six months rose to 18.2 percent from 16.7 percent, and those expecting business conditions to worsen decreased to 13.8 percent from 17.6 percent.

Additionally, 18.5 percent expect more jobs during the next six months compared with 15.8 percent in August. Those expecting fewer jobs decreased from 23.7 percent to 18.5 percent.

"The Consumer Confidence Index rebounded in September and is back to levels seen earlier this year," says Lynn Franco, The Conference Board’s director of economic indicators. "Consumers were more positive in their assessment of current conditions—in particular the job market—and considerably more optimistic about the short-term outlook for business conditions, employment and their financial situation. Despite continuing economic uncertainty, consumers are slightly more optimistic than they have been in several months."

Date : 10/5/2012