) -- Consumer confidence increased for the first time in three months in December, boding well for holiday sales.

The Reuters/University of Michigan final index of consumer sentiment jumped to 72.5 for December -- revised down from a preliminary reading earlier in the month of 73.4.

The measure fell short of economists' expectations of 73.8.

In November, the index read 67.4.

Earlier Wednesday, the Commerce Department said consumer spending grew 0.5% in November, while incomes rose 0.4%.


Reported by Jeanine Poggi in New York.

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