Consumer Confidence Strongest in Five Years

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Experts say consumer confidence is at its highest levels since 2008, according to a new report by the Confidence Board.

"Back-to-back monthly gains suggest that consumer confidence is on the mend and may be regaining the traction it lost due to the fiscal cliff, payroll tax hike and sequester," Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at The Conference Board, said in a statement.

This comes with surging home values and record-setting stock prices.

The Dow Jones hit its 25th record high this year, and home prices rose nearly 11 percent in the 12 months ending in March. It's the largest gain in seven years.

The Federal Reserve and central bankers have fueled the 2013 economic rally by buying up government bonds, pushing down interest rates and enticing investors to buy stocks. It's a strategy that has some financial critics worried the Dow's rise has been artificially inflated by the Fed's zero percent interest rate policy designed to keep borrowing rates low.

Meanwhile, others disagree saying confidence in economic recovery is the driving force behind the market surge.

The Dow has inked gains for 20 consecutive Tuesdays.

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