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The Marketplace Daily Pulse is up today. The U.S. consumer - that beaten-down, bedraggled, hopeless character - seems to be getting a shot of optimism.

The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index hit a five-month high today, Reuters reports. It was up to 64.2, a three-point jump from last month. Economists watch that number to get a sense of the where things are heading with consumer spending.

People told the survey they're still a little bummed about their personal finances, but they see the overall economy improving.

Follow Matt Berger at @byMattBerger