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The Conference Board reports that its index of consumer confidence dropped from February’s 104.4 to 102.4 in March, slightly lower than the 102.5 that had been expected by economists.

"Consumers are still quite confident despite recent increases in unemployment claims and rising prices at the gap pump," said Conference Board economist Lynn Franco in a prepared statement.

The Conference Board also said that those who believe that business conditions are "good" rose to 25.8 percent from February's 24.6 percent; at the same time, people who saw business conditions as "bad" in March grew to 16.0 percent, from 15.7 percent in February.
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