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Despite positive U.S. economic statistics, why are Americans experiencing negative sentiments?


Sep 16, 2023

According to an exclusive poll, Americans are using words like “terrible,” “chaotic,” and “sad” to describe the current economic situation in their lives. While economists believe in a “soft landing” and a strong job market, the general sentiment among Americans is less positive. The poll revealed that 70% of respondents believe the economy is getting worse, not better, despite positive economic statistics.

One factor contributing to this negative outlook is the perception that the cost of living is still rising. 84% of respondents believe that inflation is continuing to increase, with food costs being cited as the biggest cause by 49% of those who believe inflation is ongoing. Additionally, household debt is on the rise, with 39% of respondents stating that their debt has increased in the past year. Many households have had to dip into their savings to pay their bills, and savings have also decreased for many respondents.

The end of pandemic aid has also impacted the economic situation for many Americans. While 55% of respondents received federal stimulus or other aid during the pandemic, this assistance has ceased, and Congress has rejected proposals to resume expanded aid for child care. As a result, Census Bureau data has shown a significant increase in child poverty.

Economic concerns have caused many Americans to cut back on non-essential expenses. Eating out less frequently, spending less on clothing, delaying home improvements, and canceling vacations are some of the ways in which people are reducing their spending. Low-income groups are particularly affected by rising inflation, with their savings being depleted and household debt increasing at higher rates than higher-income households.

Looking towards the holiday season, Americans are planning to spend less on holiday shopping this year compared to previous years. This caution in spending could have an impact on the economy, as retailers rely on consumer spending to boost profits.

Overall, the poll highlights the discrepancy between positive economic indicators and the negative sentiment expressed by many Americans. Rising costs, household debt, the end of pandemic aid, and cautious spending are contributing factors to the public’s perception of a challenging economic situation.

By Editor

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