South Korean Consumer Confidence Rises to 4-Month High, BOK Says

South Korean consumer confidence rose to the highest level in four months, buoyed by signs of improvement in the U.S. economy and progress in containing Europe’s sovereign debt crisis.

The sentiment index rose to 101 in March from February’s 100, the Bank of Korea said in an e-mailed statement today. A reading above 100 indicates optimists outnumber pessimists.

The expected inflation rate over the next year was 3.9 percent, slower than the previous month’s estimate of 4 percent, today’s report showed.

The consumer confidence index is based on a survey of 2,084 households in 56 cities, conducted by mail and telephone between March 13 and March 20.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eunkyung Seo in Seoul at eseo3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Panckhurst at ppanckhurst@bloomberg.net

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