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Consumer confidence and home prices edge up

By Caroline Valetkevitch

NEW YORK | Tue Aug 31, 2010 1:42pm EDT

NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. consumer confidence rose modestly in August and U.S. homes prices gained more than expected in June, easing some worries the economy is headed for another downturn soon.

Another report released on Tuesday showed the pace of growth in business activity in the U.S. Midwest slowed in August, but economists said the data overall did not present new worries about the path of the economy.

The data shows “the economy, while it is not going on all cylinders, is also not sliding into this double-dip recession that people are concerned about,” said Eric Kuby, chief investment officer at North Star Investment Management Corp in Chicago.

Financial markets, however, were reluctant to read too much into the numbers, particularly as investors awaited the release on Friday of the government’s closely watched monthly report on the U.S. labor market.

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