Americans Growing More Pessimistic About Economy: CNBC Survey
The American dream appears increasingly elusive to the average citizen, with the CNBC All-America Economic Survey finding continued high levels of pessimism in the nation’s outlook for incomes, home values and the future of the economy.
After trillions of dollars were put to work for monetary and fiscal stimulus, just 8 percent of the nation views the economy as excellent or good and 92 percent see it as fair or poor, little changed from a year ago.
But just 37 percent of the public believes the economy will improve in the next year, down five points from a year ago. Taken together, the combined percentage of Americans who are pessimistic about the economy now and for the next year is at the second highest for the three-year life of the CNBC survey.
One doesn’t have to look far for the reasons for the prevailing pessimism. Just one in four Americans believe their wages will increase in the next year. Even fewer, one in five, believe their home price will rise.
Both figures are record lows for the survey. In March 2007, about half the public expected gains for both their home values and their wages.
The politics of pessimism weigh heavily on President Obama and the Democrats. The president’s approval rating on the economy remains stuck at 45 percent, with those who are pessimistic on the economy giving the president approval ratings in the low double digits.
Congressional Democrats can boast of approval from only 35 percent of the public, just a bit than higher than congressional Republicans, with a 31 percent rating.