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U.S. consumer confidence falls

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U.S. September consumer confidence ebbed to its lowest levels since February, driven by deteriorating labour market and business conditions, according to a private report released Tuesday.

The Conference Board, an industry group, said its index of consumer attitudes fell to 48.5 in September from a revised 53.2 in August.

Inflation expectations eased slightly, even after the Federal Reserve has said it is ready to take action to keep yields down in an effort to stimulate growth. Consumers' one year inflation expectations edged down to 4.9 percent from 5.0 percent the previous month.

The median of forecasts from analysts polled by Reuters was for a main September reading of 52.5. Forecasts ranged from 48.0 to 55.0.

The August reading was revised down slightly from an original 53.5. The expectations index slipped to 65.4 from 72.0 last month. The present situation index slipped to 23.1 from 24.9 in August.

Consumers' labour market assessment worsened. The "jobs hard to get" index rose to 46.1 from 45.5, while the "jobs Plentiful" index decreased to 3.8 from 4.0.

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