American consumer sentiment moved higher in July, close to its best level in 15 years. The combination of a prolonged rally in stocks and an unemployment rate that is at its lowest level in 50 years continues to fuel optimism about personal finances. The University of Michigan’s report on Friday showed more Americans expect to be financially better off a year from now, with the gauge matching the highest level since 2004.
This confirmation of consumer strength is welcome news for an economy that remains challenged by weaker global growth, soft manufacturing and softer business investment.
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