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Consumer confidence rose in Nebraska in January, while business confidence declined slightly but stayed at a strong level, according to the latest monthly surveys from the Bureau of Business Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Responses to the January Survey of Nebraska Households indicate that consumer confidence rose to 104 in January, above the neutral level of 100 and the December 2018 reading of 99.1.

Nebraska business confidence stood at 107.4, based on responses to the January Survey of Nebraska Business. This is well above the neutral value of 100 but down slightly from a reading of 109.9 in December.

“Nebraska businesses and consumers began 2019 with a sense of optimism about the state’s economy,” Eric Thompson, the bureau's director, said in a news release.

A higher-than-usual 26 percent of respondents said that their top financial issue was either paying down debt or saving for the future. At the same time, businesses were resolute to face the competition, with an elevated 15 percent of respondents indicating their top business challenge was competition from other businesses or a need to improve business practices.

To see the full survey report, go to, bbr.unl.edu.

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Business editor/reporter

Matt Olberding is a Lincoln native and University of Nebraska-Lincoln graduate who has been covering business for the Journal Star since 2005.

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