Consumer confidence uptick

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Despite a jittery economy, consumers showed renewed confidence this month.

The New York-based Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index rose to 88.6 for the month, up from a revised 87.8 during November – the first increase since July.

Confidence levels are considered important because they indicate possible changes in spending patterns, and consumer spending contributes nearly about two-thirds of the U.S. economy.

The news comes as many retailers reported mediocre Christmas traffic.

The International Council of Shopping Centers said this week that same-store sales figures are registering below already slim projections for a 2.5 percent gain.