On March 13, Gallup released a poll titled “U.S. Economic Confidence Matches Best in Four Years.”
A few notable excerpts:
U.S. economic confidence improved sharply to -18 in the week ending March 11 from -25 the prior week -- the highest since the week ending Feb. 13, 2011, when it was also -18. The -18 readings this year and last are the highest weekly levels Gallup has recorded since it started tracking confidence daily in January 2008.
The percentage of Americans saying the economy is "getting better" increased to 43% last week, while the percentage saying it is "getting worse" fell to 53%. Both of these measures are at their best levels since the 43% "getting better" and 52% "getting worse" of the week ending Feb. 13, 2011.
In a separate question, consumers' "poor" rating of the economy is now at 39%. This is the lowest "poor" rating for current economic conditions since the week ending March 9, 2008.
This improvement in consumer perceptions is taking place despite sharply higher gas prices at the pump. In this regard, Gallup data find gas prices would need to climb to more than $5 per gallon before consumers would need to significantly alter their lifestyles.
The Special Note summarizes my overall thoughts about our economic situation
SPX at 1397.52 as this post is written