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CONSUMERS ARE MORE OPTIMISTIC ABOUT THE FUTURE

 NEW YORK, Nov. 24 ~PRNewswire~ -- Consumers' spirits are much improved in November. The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index (1985 equals 100) registered 65.5, an impressive 11-point gain over October's reading.
 People are moderately more positive in their appraisal of prevailing conditions, and significantly more optimistic in their expectations for the immediate months ahead. Buying plans, on balance, are marginally stronger.
 The Consumer Confidence Survey is based on a sample of 5,000 U.S. households representing all geographic regions, age groups and income levels. The survey is conducted for The Conference Board by National Family Opinion, Inc. (NFO) of Greenwich, Conn.
 "The improvement in consumer confidence in November is consistent with recent economic news," says Fabian Linden, executive director of The Conference Board's Consumer Research Center. "Retailers report that business has been somewhat more lively, and there also appears to be some improvement in other sectors of the economy, such as industrial production and employment opportunities. But, while consumer confidence is up smartly in November, it is still at a level which is historically associated with a lackluster economy. We have a long way to go before we are in a full recovery mode."
 A large number of survey participants, more than two out of every five, continue to classify prevailing business conditions as "bad," while less than one in eight say that they are "good." Both of these numbers are not very different from those recorded a month earlier. On the issue of present employment conditions, slightly more people now than in October say that jobs are "plentiful," but about the same number as previously complain that they are "hard to get." In short, in assessing the present situation, there is a moderate improvement.
 In their expectations for the future, however, Americans are distinctly more optimistic than in many months. In November, there is a fairly large increase in those who expect business conditions to be better six months from now, and a decrease in the number that fear they will worsen. Similarly, on the question of job prospects, a larger proportion of respondents than previously now believe that more jobs will become available. Fewer persons than previously are concerned that the employment situation will worsen.
 -0- 11~24~92
 ~CONTACT: Fabian Linden of The Conference Board, 212-339-0303 (office), or 212-831-3007 (home)~


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TM-WB -- NY002 -- 0943 11~24~92 09:59 EST
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Date:Nov 24, 1992
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