Gallup’s U.S. Economic Confidence Index hit its highest monthly reading of the year in May, though it’s still trailing last year’s level. The Index measures Americans’ confidence based on their views of current economic conditions as well as their perceptions of whether the economy is getting better or worse. Last May, the index reached an all-time high, setting a record for best reading since tracking began in 2008. But following those highs, confidence fell significantly in the fall. Since then, Americans’ attitudes about the economy have continued to improve gradually, with recent gains indicating an uptick in optimism and stability. In fact, Americans are not only feeling more confident but also spending more money. Gallup reports that consumer spending reached a 6-year high in May, with reports of daily spending up to $98 – $10 higher than April and $8 up from last year. The recently released economic data suggests Americans are becoming increasingly more comfortable with their personal finances and more confident in the broader economy. More here and here.