NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. consumer sentiment finished September at its strongest in more than a year on growing optimism about the economy and more favorable outlook on future income, a survey released on Friday showed.
The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan’s final September reading on the overall index on consumer sentiment finished at 84.6, the highest since July 2013, up from 82.5 at the end of August.
The late September reading was unchanged from its initial figure and economists polled by Reuters had expected a reading of 84.7.
“The main factor promoting greater confidence in September was more favorable prospects for the domestic economy as well as more favorable personal income expectations,” survey director Richard Curtin said in a statement.
Curtin said the September index reading, which was the second highest in the last seven years, signals an acceleration in consumer spending in the next 12 months, which might grow at a 2.7 percent pace.
The survey’s gauge of consumer expectations ended at 75.4 in late September, also the highest since July 2013 on a final basis though it was a tad lower than preliminary reading of 75.6 reported earlier in this month. It was higher than the 71.3 reading in August and above a forecast of 75.0.
The survey’s barometer of current economic conditions was 98.9 in late September, compared with 98.5 seen earlier this month. It was lower than August’s 99.8 and above a forecast of 98.0.
The survey’s one-year inflation expectation fell to 3.0 percent from 3.2 percent and the survey’s five-to-10-year inflation outlook was at 2.8 percent from 2.9 percent. The late September inflation readings were unchanged from their early September levels.
Reporting by Richard Leong