US economy
US consumer confidence suffered a steep decline in AprilReuters

US consumer confidence went up 1.1 points to 95.4 in May on the Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, the Board announced.

The Conference Board, a private research organisation, announced that consumer confidence rose slightly, but the expectations index went down to 86.9 from 87.1 in April.

The consumer confidence survey on which the index is based, is conducted monthly by information company Nielsen for the Board. Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at the Conference Board said that consumers are still cautious about the outlook after consumer confidence suffered a steep fall in April.

Paul Ashworth, chief US economist at Capital Economics, said: "The improvement in the Conference Board's consumer confidence index ... was a pleasant surprise given that other measures of confidence had weakened in response to the recent surge in gasoline prices."

"Admittedly, the expectations index in the Conference Board survey did decline ... However, that deterioration was more than offset by a sizeable rebound in the present situation index to 108.1, from 105.1," Ashworth said.

Though consumer confidence was lower than initially expected, it was 13.2 points up from 82.2 in May 2014.

"We would normally attribute that rebound in the present situation to increased confidence about the labour market, either about jobs or wages. But the net proportion of respondents saying that jobs were plentiful rather than hard to get was ... below the recent high of -3.9 reached in January," Ashworth said.

The proportion of respondents in the Conference Board's survey that expected to see a decrease in their income went up slightly from 10.8% to 11.1%.

"Overall, most confidence indicators have fallen back over the past few months, but remain at levels that historically have been consistent with stronger real consumption growth than we have actually seen in recent months," Ashworth concluded.