Will the Fed's monetary stimulus take time to flow to consumer confidence and spending?
"Confidence among U.S. consumers improved in April for a second month amid signs the longest recession in the postwar era may be easing.
The Reuters/University of Michigan preliminary index of consumer sentiment rose to 61.9, the highest since September, from 57.3 in March. The reading on expectations for six months from now improved. The index reached a three-decade low of 55.3 in November.
Recent reports indicate housing and manufacturing, two of the hardest-hit areas, may be stabilizing, supporting Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke’s view that the U.S.’s 'sharp decline' could be slowing. An improvement in confidence may help sustain a recovery in consumer spending, which accounts for 70 percent of the economy."