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.

As the new year began, the Associated Press summed up the optimistic outlook of experts succinctly: “Consumers will spend more. Government will cut less. Business will invest more. And more companies will hire.” In that regard, the Bureau of Labor Statistics first report of the year showed that the unemployment rate fell to a five-year low of 6.7 percent, and essentially remained at that level in February.

But even so, much of the American public is still not over the Great Recession. CONT.

Andrew Kohut, Pew

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