NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Cyclical stocks linked to consumer spending are leading the market higher, which bodes well for further gains in U.S. equities.
The chart below shows that both ETFs have outperformed SPDR S&P 500 (SPY) during the past month, signaling that economically sensitive sectors underlie the gains in U.S. equities.
Consumer stocks were aided this week by a report that the U.S. consumer-confidence figure improved unexpectedly, reaching its highest level since October 2007. The Conference Board said on Tuesday that its index of consumer confidence rose to 92.4 in August from a reading of 90.3 in July.
The chart below highlights the recent improvement in the labor market, as well as the gradual decline of the 10-year interest rate that has held up business activity.