The Westpac-Melbourne Institute Consumer Sentiment Index rose by 2.5% in September to 97.9 but remained in pessimistic territory. The gap between consumer and business sentiment appears to be narrowing with a pullback in the AiG PMI reported for September down 5.6 points to 54.2 but still in positive territory above 50. Improved employment was also a positive but retail remains weak. The D&B Business Expectation was down slightly in the latest survey while Actuals rose. The W-MI Leading Index fell slightly last month from -0.04% to -0.19% in August.