Moving Up

Consumer confidence continues on a high note—even in California. A quarterly survey done by the A. Gary Anderson Center for Economic Research at Chapman University in Orange, Calif., shows that consumers in the state are more upbeat about the economy than before. The California Consumer Sentiment Index increased to 90.7 in the third quarter, up from 81.8 in the second quarter of 2003. This marks the second consecutive quarterly improvement. Although the slow recovery in the economy and lack of new jobs concerned Californians, they were upbeat about the passage of the state budget. Consumers also expected to spend more on big-ticket items.