What's Behind Americans' Negative Economic Outlook?
Summary from the AllSides News Team
Why do many Americans have a negative perception of the state of the economy despite strong output and declining inflation?
Political Pessimism: A Wall Street Journal (Center bias) analysis determined Americans’ poor outlook is more political than economic, writing, “Democrats and Republicans think the economy is great when their party controls the White House and terrible when the other party does.” The writer determines the economy might not be what people are upset about, stating, “pessimism about the economy may reflect dissatisfaction with the country as a whole.”
Inflation, Interest, and Angst: An analysis from the Washington Examiner (Lean Right bias) identified four key reasons why economic confidence is low: inflation, interest rates, the pandemic, and “Republican angst.” While inflation has slowed, prices remain high and are still rising. Rising interest rates have put large purchases, such as homes and cars, out of reach for many Americans. The pandemic fundamentally shook the economic confidence of consumers and investors. Republicans are disproportionately unsatisfied with the economy, “dragging down overall measures of sentiment.”
Economic Disconnect: A New York Times (Lean Left bias) article explored the divide between messaging from the Biden Administration and voters’ perspective on the economy. The Biden team has cited declining inflation and low unemployment as indicators of effective policies, but one analyst is quoted arguing, “that’s not the economy to most people. The economy to most people is gas prices and food and whether or not they can afford to throw a birthday party for their kid.”
Featured Coverage of this Story
From the LeftEven Most Biden Voters Don’t See a Thriving Economy
Presidents seeking a second term have often found the public’s perception of the economy a pivotal issue. It was a boon to Ronald Reagan; it helped usher Jimmy Carter and George H.W. Bush out of the White House.
Now, as President Biden looks toward a re-election campaign, there are warning signals on that front: With overall consumer sentiment at a low ebb despite solid economic data, even Democrats who supported Mr. Biden in 2020 say they’re not impressed with the economy.
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From the CenterThe Economy Is Great. Why Are Americans in Such a Rotten Mood?
Last week we learned that the economy, far from sliding toward recession as economists had predicted over the past year, has actually picked up steam thanks to indefatigable consumers.
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From the RightThe obvious and not-so-obvious reasons people are unhappy about the economy
Economic sentiment and President Joe Biden’s approval ratings are low despite strong output and employment growth for reasons both obvious and subtle.
The public is gloomy about the state of the economy even though two of the most important measures of economic health are strong — namely, GDP growth has been strong in recent quarters, and the employment rate is high by historical standards.
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