CONFIDENCE JUMPS ON LOWER FUEL COSTS

NEW YORK - Lower gas prices helped boost September's Consumer Confidence Index, which rose to 104.5, up from an adjusted 100.2 in August, and beating the consensus estimate of 103."A more favorable assessment of current conditions coupled with a less pessimistic short-term outlook boosted consumer confidence this month," said Lynn Franco, director of the Conference Board Consumer Research Center here.

NEW YORK - Lower gas prices helped boost September's Consumer Confidence Index, which rose to 104.5, up from an adjusted 100.2 in August, and beating the consensus estimate of 103.

"A more favorable assessment of current conditions coupled with a less pessimistic short-term outlook boosted consumer confidence this month," said Lynn Franco, director of the Conference Board Consumer Research Center here. "However, even though consumers' concerns have eased, there is little to suggest a

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