WASHINGTON - Consumer confidence tumbled in May to the lowest level in six months on continued worries over jobs and general business conditions, the Conference Board reported yesterday.

The consumer confidence index of the New York-based business research organization posted a reading of 61.5, down from 67.6 in April. The retreat, which helped lift the bond market, marked the lowest point in public spirits since an October reading of 54.6. The index is based on a 1985 base average of 100.

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