The sense that the country is due for an economic slowdown doesn’t seem to be hurting the public’s perception of economic conditions. According to a recent Gallup poll, Americans are expressing confidence in the economy at near the peak rate set more than a year ago.
The current index value hit +29 in November, just four points below the +33 registered in October 2018, the highest reading since the late 1990s/early 2000s economic boom. The highest Gallup has ever measured was +56 in January 2000.
More than half (55%) of Americans rate economic conditions as either excellent or good, while only 9% say they are poor, Gallup reports. Also, 52% of U.S. adults believe the economy is getting better, while only 41% say it is getting worse, and 65% say it’s a good time to find a quality job.
“In September and October, amid predictions of a looming recession, Americans were evenly divided as to the economy’s direction,” Gallup writer Jeffrey Jones stated.
“Americans are more confident in the economy now than in recent months, and their satisfaction levels have been restored after dipping in October,” Jones concludes. “More than any other issue, they view the government as the most important problem facing the country, with Democrats and Republicans largely seeing the other party’s elected officials as the problem. These attitudes point toward another contentious presidential election next year, with Republicans hoping that a continued strong economy will help persuade Americans to elect Trump to a second term.”
Gallup’s Economic Confidence Index summarizes Americans’ ratings of current economic conditions and perceptions of whether the economy is getting better or worse. It has increased by 12 points since September, when roughly half thought a recession was likely to occur. The results are from a survey conducted during the first two week of November.