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A gauge of U.S. consumer confidence rose to 82.3 in March from an upwardly revised 78.3 in February, the Conference Board said Tuesday. Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected the index to reach 78.4 in March from a prior estimate of 78.1 in February. The expectations index rose to 83.5 in March from 76.5 in February, while a barometer for the present situation declined to 80.4 from 81. "While consumers were moderately more upbeat about future job prospects and the overall economy, they were less optimistic about income growth," said Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at the Conference Board. "Overall, consumers expect the economy to continue improving and believe it may even pick up a little steam in the months ahead."