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Report: Consumer Confidence Up Substantially in February
Published on Feb 24, 2011
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Amid a slew of recent studies finding improvements in economic activity - such as employment, small business confidence and private lending rates - consumer confidence this month has hit a three-year high.
The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index reached 70.4 this month - up from 64.8 in January - and also reflected recent improvements in consumer spending.
Last year's holiday shopping season saw the highest level of consumer spending on record, according to comScore - a trend that reflects both an improving economy as well as consumers' weariness of recession-era savings measures.
"The Consumer Confidence Index is now at a three-year high (February 2008, 76.4), due to growing optimism about the short-term future. Consumers' assessment of current business and labor market conditions has improved moderately but still remains rather weak," said Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center.
Small retailers may be most appreciative of the news, as that sector has struggled in recent years through both low consumer spending and a low availability of credit. With other recent reports of improvements in bank lending, retailers may be looking forward to 2011 as a year of expansion.