US consumer confidence on rise

By Alan Rappeport in Washington Consumer confidence in the US picked up in December, as lower levels of unemployment and bullish stock markets lifted hopes about the state of the economic recovery. Separately on Tuesday, a closely watched index showed US house prices were flat in October following five consecutive months of gains, raising doubts about the market’s ability to sustain its momentum. The Conference Board’s index of consumer confidence ticked up from 50.6 last month to 52.9 in December, in line with Wall Street analysts’ predictions. In spite of the second straight monthly rise, sentiment remains at historically low levels. Lynn Franco, director of the Conference Board’s research centre, said that although consumers have a more positive outlook, they continue to fret about their incomes and the difficulty of finding jobs. Source:

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