Consumer Confidence Up Sharply

Consumers appear to be much less pessimistic about the economy than they were a few months ago, according to The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index for May, issued Tuesday.

NEW YORK — Consumers appear to be much less pessimistic about the economy than they were a few months ago, according to The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index for May, issued Tuesday.

The Index for May measured 54.9, up from 40.8 in April. That included increases in both the Present Situation Index, which was up to 28.9, from 25.5 a month ago, and the Expectations Index, which was up to 72.3, vs. 51.0 in April.

"After two months of significant improvements, the

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