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U.S. Economic Confidence Index Improves Slightly to -12

U.S. Economic Confidence Index Improves Slightly to -12
by Justin McCarthy

Story Highlights

  • Index up three points from prior week
  • Current conditions, economic outlook scores up slightly

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Americans' confidence in the U.S. economy improved slightly last week. Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index averaged -12 for the week ending May 29, up three points from the prior week.

160531WeeklyEconomicConfidence1

Americans' views of the national economy have skewed consistently negative for over a year -- Gallup's Economic Confidence Index registered positive in several weekly readings between late December 2014 and mid-March 2015, but has been negative ever since. From a broader perspective, index scores this year, as they were last year, have been well above most of the readings in Gallup's eight-year trend, particularly the deeply negative sentiments found in the years after the 2008 financial crisis.

Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index is the average of two components: how Americans rate current economic conditions and whether they feel the economy is improving or getting worse. The index has a theoretical maximum of +100 if all Americans say the economy is doing well and improving, and a theoretical minimum of -100 if all Americans say the economy is doing poorly and getting worse.

For the week ending May 29, the current conditions score registered -4. This is the result of 26% of U.S. adults rating the current economy as "excellent" or "good," and 30% rating it as "poor." This component has not varied much over the past year, with scores ranging from -9 to -1.

The economic outlook score, which has varied much more over the past year, ticked up slightly to -20 last week -- the result of 38% of U.S. adults saying the economy is "getting better" and 58% saying it is "getting worse." The economic outlook component was last at this level in mid-April, when it was at -19.

160531WeeklyEconomicConfidence2

Bottom Line

The slight boost in economic confidence comes during a great week for the Dow, which made significant gains early in the week and maintained them through Sunday. Certain areas of the U.S. economy, such as the housing market, have also shown signs of improvement. But from a broader perspective, Americans' confidence in the economy over the last year generally has been consistent and more negative than positive, with only minor week-to-week fluctuations.

These data are available in Gallup Analytics.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted May 23-29, 2016, on the Gallup U.S. Daily survey, with a random sample of 3,544 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 60% cellphone respondents and 40% 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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