Consumer sentiment ticks up heading into the holiday season

Consumer confidence rose slightly in November, getting a boost from the rapidly approaching holiday season. 

Sentiment ticked up to 54.3 from 54 in October but it remains below the peak reached earlier this year, according to the Thomson Reuters/Ipsos consumer sentiment index released on Wednesday.

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"Consumers are getting excited about the holiday season and sentiment has picked up slightly," said Jharonne Martis, director of consumer research at Thomson Reuters.

But consumers also expressed continuing concerns about their employment security, which pushed down the jobs index.  

"Sentiment hasn’t improved enough to offset their concern about the future of their job security," Martis said.

The bulk of the sentiment data was collected before last week's October jobs report showed that the economy added 271,000 jobs and the unemployment rate fell to 5 percent last month.

With the holidays approaching, consumers are expected to spend modestly; sales could come in below last year's totals, according to Thomson Reuters data.