Economic Confidence Languishes Near 2014 Lows; 62% Don't See It "Getting Better"

Tyler Durden's picture

Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index dropped slightly to -17 for the week ending August 10th, hovering just off the lows of 2014 as only 38% of Americans believe the economy is "getting better." Perhaps even more concerning, given record high stock prices and cycle low unemployment rates, only 19% of Americans said the economy is "excellent" or "good," - the lowest in 5 months. Gallup concludes, generally speaking, Americans remain more negative than positive about the economy, but are less negative than they were in the first few years after the Great Recession - $4 trillion later.

 

As Gallup notes,

Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index dropped slightly to -17 for the week ending Aug. 10.

Gallup's Economic Confidence Index is the average of two components: Americans' views on the current economic situation and their perceptions of whether the economy is getting better or worse. Last week, 19% of Americans said the economy is "excellent" or "good," while 35% said it is "poor," resulting in a current conditions score of -16 -- a three-point dip from the previous week.

While 38% of Americans said the economy is "getting better," 56% said it is "getting worse," resulting in an economic outlook score of -18. This is one point lower than the prior week.

Generally speaking, Americans remain more negative than positive about the economy, but are less negative than they were in the first few years after the Great Recession.

This year has arguably been a positive one for the economy with growth in consumer spending, the GDP, and hiring, all of which should send the public's economic confidence upward. However, these positive economic developments may be offset by a series of international and domestic challenges, including the rise of Islamic militants in Iraq, intense fighting between the Israelis and Palestinians, increasing U.S.-Russia tensions, a wave of illegal immigrants from Central America, and stock market volatility after a year of steady stock increases in 2013.

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Which is all very odd given government-surveys show confidence at pre-recession highs and rising...