Confidence Moves Up as U.S. Housing Recovers

ECONOMY_1

Consumer confidence moved up to the highest level in more than five years and prices progressed by the most in seven as the housing rebound gives the U.S. economy a push.

Data from the New York-based private research group presented today, the Conference Board’s sentiment index increased to reach 76.2 in May, running beyond all predictions in a Bloomberg report of economists and the highest since February 2008. The S&P/Case-Shiller index of property values in 20 cities jumped by 10.9% in the year to March, the major 12-month increase since April 2006.

Growing property and stock values are improving household finances, helping Americans deal with it by a rise in the payroll and wage gains that have hardly survived with inflation. Stocks moved up as the reports strengthened the position for consumer spending and earnings at companies extending from retailers such as Williams-Sonoma Inc. (WSM) to homebuilders with PulteGroup Inc (PHM).

Michael Feroli chief U.S. economist at JPMorgan Chase & Co. in New York quoted “We’re getting back on track,”

The S&P 500 Index increased by 1% to reach 1,666.51 at 11:51 a.m. in New York. The S&P Super composite Retailing Index also improved by 1.3%. Treasuries dropped, transferring the yield on the benchmark 10-year note up to 2.11%, a one-year high.