Consumer confidence improves
WASHINGTON — American consumer confidence jumped this month on a better outlook for hiring and overall growth, supporting other signs that show the economy could accelerate in 2014.
The Conference Board said Tuesday that its index of consumer confidence rose to 78.1 in December, up from 72 in the previous month. November's figure was revised up from 70.4.
Consumer confidence is nearly back to where it was before the partial government shutdown in October. Steady job gains and a surging stock market have made Americans more optimistic about the economy and hiring both now and in the next six months.
“The upbeat consumer mood bodes well for spending in 2014,” said Michael Dolega, senior economist at TD Economics.
Optimism about the job market is at a five-year high. That is a positive sign for a strong December jobs report, which will be released next week.
Olindy Cinada, 24, of Newport News, Va, says he's seen “a lot more job openings in the past month.”
In fact, he was hired in December as a meter reader for the Newport News Waterworks, the regional water provider owned and operated by the city. As a result, he and his wife are planning to buy a home next year.
A better job market could also drive more consumer spending, which accounts for 70 percent of economic activity.
A last-minute surge of online shopping helped boost overall holiday spending, according to MasterCard Advisors' SpendingPulse report. Sales from Nov. 1 through Dec. 24 rose 3.5 percent compared with last year, the firm said last week.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Federal appeals courts disagree on Obamacare subsidies
- Latrobe’s Ci Medical Technologies transforms to medical device business
- Allegheny Technologies reports 2Q loss despite higher sales
- Gas pipeline issues challenge for producers, users
- U.S. stocks slip to start the week; Six Flags sinks
- Congress may crimp offshore merger tax relief
- Checking account holdings reach 25-year high
- Grads’ starting salaries way behind average
- Workers strive for independence in ‘flex economy’
- Credit eases for small business as lenders’ recession worries fade
- Entrepreneurial teen mines bitcoins, contributes toward electric bill