Consumer confidence rose in February, according to the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index released Friday.
The month’s preliminary index rose to a reading of 76.3 from 73.8 in January.
Economists had forecast the index would rise to 74.8, Bloomberg News reported.
The index averaged 89 in the five years before the recession that began in December 2007.
The survey’s index of current conditions asks Americans if they are better off than they were a year ago and if it is a good time to buy big-ticket items.