Investor and retirement optimism surged in the first quarter, driven almost entirely by happier, more hopeful retirees, according to the Wells Fargo/Gallup Investor and Retirement Optimism Index released Wednesday.

The index rose to +37 in February, up 12 points from +25 in November of 2013. Among retired investors, the index shot up 35 points to +41 from +6 three months earlier. In contrast, optimism among non-retired investors held steady at +35, a mere three-point gain from +32.

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