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U.S. Economic Confidence at +3 for Third Straight Week

U.S. Economic Confidence at +3 for Third Straight Week

by Justin McCarthy

Story Highlights

  • Index in positive territory for eighth consecutive week
  • Current conditions up from previous week, economic outlook down

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index remains at +3 for its third week in a row. Since emerging from negative territory for the first time almost two months ago, the index hasn't strayed from its narrow five-point range in positive territory.

Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index -- Weekly Averages Since February 2014

Despite little movement in 2015 so far, the index's eighth consecutive positive reading is a feat of its own. Gallup has tracked the index daily since 2008, and until only recently, all weekly readings had been negative -- with a low of -65 at the onset of the global economic crisis in 2008.

Gallup's Economic Confidence Index is the average of two components: Americans' opinions on the current economy and their views on whether the economy will get better or get worse. Though Americans have been a bit more positive about the economy's future than about current conditions in recent weeks, the former took a slight hit in the latest weekly reading, while the current conditions component ticked up a couple of points.

For the week ending Feb. 15, 28% of Americans said the economy is "excellent" or "good" while 26% said it is "poor." This resulted in a current conditions score of +2, up a couple of points from the previous week's zero. Meanwhile, 49% said the economy was "getting better" while 46% said it was "getting worse," resulting in an economic outlook score of +3, down from the two previous weekly scores of +6.

Economic Confidence Index Components -- Weekly Averages Since February 2014

Bottom Line

Though the U.S. Economic Confidence Index has been essentially frozen since entering positive territory, its eight-week stability makes it seem less likely that the index could snap back to negative without significant cause.

Rising gas prices could hamper the index's potential progress, however. After lower prices likely boosted confidence in recent months, more pressure at the pump could jeopardize future index increases. But good news -- like a promising January jobs report on Feb. 6 -- doesn't seem to be affecting overall confidence either.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted Feb. 9-15, 2015, on the Gallup U.S. Daily survey, with a random sample of 3,551 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±2 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

Learn more about how Gallup Daily tracking works.


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