U.S. consumer confidence increased again in May to hit a five-year high, said a report by the research institute of Conference Board on Tuesday.
The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index rose to 76.2 from the revised-up figure of 69.0 in April, the report said. The May reading marked the highest level since February 2008 and topped market estimates.
The report showed that the present situation index increased to 66.7 from 61.0, while the expectations index, which is a gauge of consumers' expectation for business conditions over the next six months, improved to 82.4 from 74.3 last month.
"Consumers' assessment of current business and labor-market conditions was more positive and they were considerably more upbeat about future economic and job prospects," said Lynn Franco, director of Economic Indicators at the Conference Board.
"Back-to-back monthly gains suggest that consumer confidence is on the mend and may be regaining the traction it lost due to the fiscal cliff, payroll-tax hike, and sequester," Franco added.
The monthly consumer confidence survey is conducted for the Conference Board by Nielsen, a leading global provider of information and analytics, and it surveys 3,000 households across the country each month.