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Consumer Confidence at One-year High in February (02/28/12)

Consumer confidence hit a one-year high this month as optimism about the labor market offset concerns over rising gasoline prices, the Conference Board reports. The organization’s index of consumer attitudes increased to 70.8 in February—the highest reading since February last year—from an upwardly revised 61.5 in January. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast the index rising to 63.0 from a previously reported reading of 61.1 in January.

“Consumers are considerably less pessimistic about current business and labor market conditions than they were in January,” says Lynn Franco, director of the Conference Board Consumer Research Center, adding that “despite further increases in gas prices, they are more optimistic about the short-term outlook for the economy, job prospects, and their financial situation.”