Consumer confidence rises to highest level since Feb.
Washington – American consumers are the most confident they’ve been since 2000.
The Conference Board says its consumer confidence index rose to 130.8 in February, highest since November 2000 and up from 124.3 in January.
The business research group’s index measures consumers’ assessment of current conditions and their outlook for the next six months. Both rose in February.
A strong job market is boosting confidence. The unemployment rate has stayed at a 17-year low 4.1 percent.
Consumers shrugged off volatility in the stock market.
“Overall, consumers remain quite confident that the economy will continue expanding at a strong pace in the months ahead,” says Lynn Franco, the Conference Board’s director of economic indicators.
Economists watch the Conference Board report closely because consumer spending accounts for about 70 percent of U.S. economic output.