US consumer confidence improves in April
WASHINGTON (AP) — American consumers are feeling more confident this month, though optimism hasn’t fully recovered from a period of roiling markets and slowed hiring early this year.
The Conference Board, a business research group, said Tuesday that its consumer confidence index rose to 129.2 in April, from 124.2 in March.
The index, covering the month through April 18, measures consumers’ assessment of current economic conditions and their expectations for the next six months. Both rose in April.
Economists pay close attention to the index because consumer spending accounts for about 70 percent of U.S. economic activity.
The index slipped in March amid roiling financial markets and a February employment that showed hiring had tumbled. U.S. employers added only 20,000 jobs, the smallest monthly gain in nearly a year and a half.