The University of Michigan's index of consumer sentiment rose to 78.3 this month from 74.3 in August. That's just below May's reading of 79.3, which was the highest since January 2008.
Americans were also more optimistic about future jobs prospects, the survey found. And the number of consumers who expect the economy to keep growing is double the number of those who expect a decline.
The report echoes a survey released Tuesday by the Conference Board that also found a jump in confidence.
But the brighter outlook hasn't yet translated into more spending. Adjusted for inflation, consumer spending barely grew in August, the Commerce Department said Friday.