Resurgent public optimism on the economy? Don’t hold your breath
One of the biggest political puzzles of 2014 is why the public remains so bearish about the economy, and in turn critical of Barack Obama’s stewardship of it, given clear signs that economic indicators are improving. An analysis by Andrew Kohut.
Chart of the Week: How metro areas drive the U.S. economy
A handful of metropolitan areas generate the bulk of U.S. economic activity.
American unions membership declines as public support fluctuates
Though unions retain much public support, the share of American workers who actually belong to one has been falling for decades and is at its lowest level since the Great Depression
Americans have been lukewarm, skeptical about economy since 2000
Americans have held lukewarm-to-gloomy views of the economy for a decade and a half, in good times and bad.
Mixed Views of Economic News Persist
Over the past year, both the unemployment rate and the share of Americans in the labor force have fallen. The stock market rose during much of 2013, before falling at the start of this year. Through it all, the public’s perceptions of economic news have changed very little.
Long-term unemployment remains high
Nearly four-in-ten unemployed Americans have been out of work for at least six months.
Chart of the Week: The best-performing U.S. cities
Technology and energy drove the strongest urban economies last year.
Chart of the Week: Where the loss of unemployment benefits will hit
A map from the Washington Post shows the states where the expiration of unemployment benefits on Saturday will have the most impact.
Public Resists Entitlement Cuts in Deficit Debate
Majorities of Americans say it is more important to maintain spending on Social Security and Medicare and programs to help the poor than to take steps to reduce the budget deficit.
No Improvement in Public’s Views of Economic News
As the Federal Reserve meets to discuss whether to keep up its $85-billion-a-month bond-buying program, the public’s perceptions of recent economic news have shown little change.