Academic journal article AEI Paper & Studies

The State of Our Union

Academic journal article AEI Paper & Studies

The State of Our Union

Article excerpt

There are signs in recent polls that Americans are beginning to see some improvement in the economy. Fewer Americans know someone who has lost a job in the past six months, although that response is still high (58 percent). Consumer confidence, as measured by the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan, has improved for the fifth straight month. More consumers reported hearing of employment gains than ever before in the more than half-century history of the Michigan Index. Although lower than a year ago, Gallup's Economic Confidence Index remains near its seven-month high. In January, Bloomberg's Consumer Comfort Index reached its highest level since July 2011. Satisfaction with the way things are going in the country is still very low, as is the belief the country is on the right track.

Q: Thinking of the last six months ...?

I or someone in my family has lost a job
in the past six months

December 2011   24%
January 2011    35

Source: AP/GfK-Roper, latest that of December 2011.

Q: Do you feel ...?

Things in this country are generally
going in the right direction

January 2012   29%
January 2011   34

Source: CBS, latest that of January 2012.

Q: And thinking of the last six months . … 
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