The University of Michigan's preliminary reading of consumer sentiment rose to 103.2, the highest since November 2000.

January's reading, up more than 10 points from December's 92.6 level, was the biggest one-month increase since late 1992 and surpassed economists' forecasts for a rise to 94.

Consumers' assessment of current economic conditions also improved sharply, to 108.9 from 97 the prior month.