NEW YORK -- The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index, based on a monthly survey of 5,000 households, revealed last week that consumer attitudes toward the U.S. economy and labor market conditions became pessimistic in September, sending the reading down a worse-than-expected 4.9 points to 76.8. The poor showing last month was down from an upwardly revised 81.7 in August, and erased that month's 4.7 point gain. "The lack of improvement in labor market conditions continues to dampen ...

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