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February 1, 2013 10:00 AM, EST
Consumer Confidence Rises in January

Consumer confidence rose in January, according to the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index released Friday.

The month’s final index rose to a reading of 73.8 from 72.9 in December. The preliminary reading in mid-January was 71.3.

Economists had forecast the index would fall to 71.5, 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.