WASHINGTON (AP) -- U.S. consumer confidence fell in April over concerns about hiring and business conditions, even though many people foresee a strengthening economy in the months ahead.
The Conference Board says its confidence index dropped to 82.3 from a March reading of 83.9. Despite the decline, consumer sentiment for the past two months has been at its strongest levels since January 2008, when the Great Recession was just beginning.
Conference Board economist Lynn Franco says that consumers became a bit more doubtful about current economic conditions but that their outlook for growth held steady.
Consumer confidence is closely watched because consumer spending accounts for about 70 percent of the U.S. economy.