Consumer Comfort in U.S. Rose Last Week for First Time in Month

  • Gauges of the state of the economy and buying climate climbed
  • Americans were less confident about personal finances

Consumer confidence climbed for the first time in a month, as perceptions about the world’s largest economy jumped by the most in more than a year.

The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index rose to 43.6 in the period ended April 10 from 42.6 the prior week. The gauge of views on the economy rose to 35.6 from 32.6, a 3-point jump that was the biggest since January 2015.

Americans’ improved assessment of the economy and less rosy take on their own financial situation -- as reflected in the comfort survey -- come in the wake of recent reports that showed hiring remains strong while wages have yet to show a sustained liftoff.

The measure of the buying climate, showing whether this is a good time to purchase goods and services, edged up to 38.7 from 38.3. The index of personal finances slipped to 56.6, a one-month low and the third consecutive decline.

Sentiment climbed across most income groups, with the biggest gains among people earning $75,000 to $99,900 a year and those making $50,000 to $74,900.

Among other details, the comfort measure climbed in three of four regions, with only the South posting a drop. The gain in confidence was spread throughout the political spectrum, improving last week for Democrats, Republicans and independents.