Consumer confidence continued to build momentum in March, which could make consumers more inclined to make major purchases during the course of 2012.
This rise in confidence could be viewed as a positive indicator for future home sales. In the wake of the real estate market collapse, many Americans chose to either remain renting or hold onto their current properties as they waited for their personal finances to improve.
However, the most recent Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Consumer Confidence Index rose to a reading of 76.2 last month, which is the highest level recorded since February 2011.
This rise in consumer confidence was unexpected, as a similar survey conducted by Econoday predicted the rate to be recorded at 75 last month.
"Although consumers are not yet optimistic about future economic prospects, pessimism has recently faded at a rapid pace," said survey director and chief economist Richard Curtin. "Perhaps too rapidly, as expected job and income gains may be unrealistically high for the economy to meet."
Meanwhile, the future outlook of consumer consumption also made significant gains last month, as a number of industry experts expect it to grow by 2.3 percent by the end of 2012.