Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index Increases

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University of Michigan final sentiment index rose to 78.3 this month from 74.3 in August. Economists projected 79 for the measure after a preliminary September reading of 79.2, according to the Bloomberg survey median. higher stock prices and a stabilization in the cost of gasoline may be combining to lift sentiment. At the same time, unemployment stuck above 8 percent and stagnant incomes are restraints for households, whose spending makes up about 70 percent of the economy. Stocks fell after the report, with the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index dropping 0.5 percent to 1,439.36 at 10:06 a.m. in New York.

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