The U.S. consumer confidence index fell to 86.0 in September from a revised 93.4 in August, marking the first decline in five months, the Conference Board said Tuesday. Economists polled by MarketWatch had projected the index to decline to 92.3. In September, the present situation index, a measure of current conditions, fell to 89.4 from 93.9 and the future expectations index slid to 83.7 from 93.1. "A less positive assessment of the current job market, most likely due to the recent softening in growth, was the sole reason for the decline in consumers' assessment of present-day conditions," said Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at board. "Looking ahead, consumers were less confident about the short-term outlook for the economy and labor market, and somewhat mixed regarding their future earnings potential. All told, consumers expect economic growth to ease in the months ahead."
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