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Financial News: U.S. Consumer Confidence Jumps To Nearly 17-Year High

U.S. Consumer Confidence Jumps To Nearly 17-Year High In October

10/31/2017 - 10:30:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Consumer confidence in the U.S. saw a significant improvement in the month of October, the Conference Board revealed in a report released on Tuesday.

The Conference Board said its consumer confidence index jumped to 125.9 in October from an upwardly revised 120.6 in September. Economists had expected the index to inch up to 121.0 from the 119.8 originally reported for the previous month.

With the much bigger than expected increase, the consumer confidence index reached its highest level since hitting 128.6 in December of 2000.

The jump by the headline index reflected improvements in both consumers' assessment of current conditions and optimism about the short-term outlook.

The present situation index climbed to 151.1 in October from 146.9 in September, while the expectations index rose to 109.1 from 103.0.

The percentage of consumers saying current business conditions are "good" edged up to 34.5 percent from 33.4 percent, although those saying conditions are "bad" also inched up to 13.5 percent from 13.2 percent.

Consumers' assessment of the job market was more upbeat, as the percentage of consumers saying jobs are "plentiful" increased to 36.3 percent from 32.7 percent and those saying jobs are "hard to get" dipped to 17.5 percent from 18.0 percent.

Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at the Conference Board, said in a post on Twitter that consumers' rating of the job market is the most positive since the summer of 2001.

Looking ahead, the percentage of consumers expecting business conditions to improve over the next six months rose to 22.2 percent from 20.9 percent, while those expecting conditions to worsen fell to 6.9 percent from 9.6 percent.

The outlook for the job market was somewhat less favorable, however, as consumers expecting more jobs in the months ahead edged down to 18.9 percent from 19.2 percent. Consumers anticipating fewer jobs also dipped to 11.8 percent from 13.0 percent.

"Confidence remains high among consumers, and their expectations suggest the economy will continue expanding at a solid pace for the remainder of the year," said Franco.

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