U.S. consumer sentiment rose to its strongest in five months in December as Americans' outlook on the economy and job prospects improved, a survey released on Monday showed.
The final reading on the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan's overall index of consumer sentiment jumped to 82.5 for December, up from the 75.1 posted in November but unchanged from the preliminary reading released earlier this month.
This was the highest reading for the index since July, though it was slightly under expectations for a reading of 83.
"Most of the gain was due to more favorable buying plans due to renewed discounting as well as more favorable short-term prospects for the economy,'' survey director Richard Curtin wrote in a statement. "Personal finances, the most critical factor that shapes consumer spending, did improve in late December, although largely due to rising incomes and wealth among those in the top third.''