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UMB Bank: Confident Consumer to Boost Economy, Stocks in 2nd Half

The yield curve will shift upward in concert with improving economic activity, enabling stocks to move higher in the second half, said KC Mathews, Chief Investment Officer for UMB Bank. Mathews said governments are now spending money and will make a positive contribution to GDP growth. He also said rising mortgage rates and home prices, along with weaker household formation growth, may slow housing activity, but will not turn negative. Mathews said confidence data is at a five-year high due to the rising stock market, a strong labor market and all-time high household net worth and this will cause consumption to continue.