Gallup Poll: Economic Confidence Drops to Lowest Since January

Wednesday, 18 Jul 2012 08:27 AM

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Americans' confidence in their economy has dropped to its lowest level since January, a Gallup poll finds.

Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index averaged minus-27 for the week ending July 15, down four points from minus-23 each of the prior two weeks, the polling firm reported.

The confidence index has gradually slipped since late May, when the index hit a four-year high of minus-16.

The index hasn't dipped as low as it is today since late January.

Blame weak monthly jobs reports for the decline, though don't expect the confidence index to plummet any farther from where it is now.

"While Americans' economic mood was relatively glum last week, it is unlikely to get worse this week and thus far, at least, seems to be mildly improving," Gallup said.

"Still, confidence remains quite negative, and below the level that Gallup has determined may be necessary for President Barack Obama to achieve re-election-friendly job approval ratings."

The economy continues to limp out of the worst downturn since the Great Depression, adding a net 80,000 nonfarm payrolls in June.

Other indicators have shown confidence in the economy is cooling thanks to a weak labor market and uncertainty over taxes and spending in the country.

The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan's preliminary reading on the overall index on consumer sentiment for July fell to 72.0 from 73.2 in June, much worse than expectations for a gain to 73.4.

"The greatest concern to consumers is that wage and job growth will remain depressed over the foreseeable future, and that these meager gains are likely to be further diminished in the years ahead by rising taxes and benefit cutbacks," survey director Richard Curtin said, according to Reuters.


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