NEW YORK, Nov. 29 (UPI) -- Consumer confidence in the United States jumped sharply in November after a drop in October, the Conference Board said Tuesday.
After hitting a two-year low in August and a slight gain in September, confidence ebbed again in October.
However, in the latest reading, the index jumped from September's reading of 40.9 to 56, the Conference Board said.
The index uses 1985 as a base year, assigning it a value of 100.
"Confidence has bounced back to levels last seen during the summer [July, 59.2]. Consumers' assessment of current conditions finally improved after six months of steady declines. Consumers' apprehension regarding the short-term outlook for business conditions, jobs and income prospects eased considerably," Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center, said in a statement.
"Consumers appear to be entering the holiday season in better spirits, though overall readings remain historically weak," she said.
The monthly Consumer Confidence Index is based on a survey of 5,000 households.
In November, the number of respondents indicating economic conditions were "good" rose from 11.2 percent to 13.3 percent. The percentage of respondents indicating conditions were "bad" fell from 43.7 percent to 38.2 percent.
The percentage of respondents indicating jobs were "plentiful" rose from 3.6 percent to 5.8 percent while the number indicating jobs were "hard to get" fell from 46.9 percent to 42.1 percent.