Based on findings in the Gallup Economic Confidence Index, Americans view the current economic situation and outlook for the future economy with a negative perspective. For the week of Aug. 13-19, the Gallup Economic Confidence Index reading registered -28. This number is down from the high of -16 in mid-May.
Gallup’s Economic Confidence Index uses a two-fold measurement system – one assessing the current state of economic conditions and the other evaluating the nation’s outlook on the economy.
Prior to the summer, Americans were more optimistic about the state of the economy, but the confidence levels have dropped dramatically, from a rating of -9 in late May to -29 in late July. However, the ratings are still higher now than they were in the latter part of 2011.
Coming into a presidential campaign, both sides of the aisle are sure use Americans’ perspectives on the economic conditions in their favor. The Republicans will likely support the idea that Democratic President Barack Obama has failed to provide a solution and actually furthered the problem, whereas the Democrats will argue that Mitt Romney’s election will simply exacerbate the issue. Fluctuations in the areas of gas prices, jobs, and the stock market make for a volatile popular opinion could change at any given point in time during the two and a half months before the elections.