The Conference Board announced on Tuesday that its index of consumer confidence jumped to 70.3 this month.
That topped the index reading of 63 that economists had forecast for September, Reuters noted.
August’s reading of the consumer confidence index was also revised higher to 61.3, up from an earlier-issued preliminary reading of 60.6.
September’s reading is the index’s best showing since February and a sign that Americans are feeling more hopeful despite continued high unemployment and a sluggish national economy.
Consumers’ outlook on current economic conditions rose to 50.2 in September, up from 46.5 last month.
Their outlook for the next six months also improved, rising from 71.1 last month, to 83.7 in September.
Americans are also feeling somewhat better about their finances and job prospects. In the next six months, 16.3% anticipate higher income, up from just 16% last month, and those saying jobs are plentiful rose to 8.3%, compared to 7.2% in August.