U.S. consumer confidence rises in March


Corrects month on headline to March from February

WASHINGTON, March 28 (Reuters) - U.S. consumer confidence unexpectedly increased in March, but Americans are becoming a bit anxious about the labor market, a survey showed on Tuesday.

The Conference Board said its consumer confidence index rose to 104.2 this month from a reading of 103.4 in February. The cutoff date for the survey was March 20, about 10 days after the failure of two regional banks. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast the index at 101.0.

"The gain reflects an improved outlook for consumers under 55 years of age and for households earning $50,000 and over," said Ataman Ozyildirim, senior director of Economics at The Conference Board.

The share of consumers viewing jobs as "plentiful" fell, while the proportion saying jobs were "not so plentiful" rose. Consumers' 12-month inflation expectations rose to 6.3% from 6.2% last month.

(Reporiting by Lucia Mutikani; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)


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