The University of Michigan and Thomson Reuters reported that consumer confidence rose strongly in preliminary March data. The Index of Consumer Sentiment jumped from 99.7 in February to 102.0 in March, the highest level since January 2004. The press release notes that those individuals with higher incomes were less upbeat in the most recent survey—likely from volatility in equity markets and the impact that has on personal finances—but that was not enough to drag down the headline index.
Indeed, Americans were more upbeat about current economic conditions (up from 114.9 to 122.8), with that measure soaring to a new all-time high. At the same time, the index for future conditions (down from 90.0 to 88.6) pulled back slightly.