PublicationsJune 18, 2009

Obama’s Ratings Remain High Despite Some Policy Concerns

A solid majority of Americans (61%) continue to approve of Barack Obama’s job performance, although they express mixed views of several of his policies. An important positive sign for Obama is the public’s continued optimism that his policies will improve the economy – fully 65% express this view. A smaller majority (55%) is optimistic […]

CommentaryJune 5, 2009

Gen Next Squeezed By Recession, But Most See Better Times Ahead

Multi-section ReportsMay 21, 2009

Independents Take Center Stage in Obama Era

Centrism has emerged as a dominant factor in public opinion as the Obama era begins. The political values and core attitudes that the Pew Research Center has monitored since 1987 show little overall ideological movement. Republicans and Democrats are even more divided than in the past, while the growing political middle is steadfastly mixed […]

PublicationsApril 28, 2009

Support for Free Trade Recovers Despite Recession

Despite the economic recession, public support for free trade agreements has recovered after declining a year ago. Currently, 44% say that free trade agreements like NAFTA and the policies of the World Trade Organization are good for the country, up from 35% a year ago. Slightly more than a third (35%) say that such […]

PublicationsApril 2, 2009

Public Knows Basic Facts About Financial Crisis

The latest Pew Research Center News IQ survey finds the American public reasonably well-informed about a number of basic facts pertaining to the current economic situation. Fully 83% know that the government assistance to banks and other financial institutions is aimed at getting them to lend more money, not less money. Roughly seven-in-ten (71%) […]

CommentaryMarch 26, 2009

Unusually Wide Gap in ’Satisfaction,’ ’Right Direction’ Measures

CommentaryFebruary 19, 2009

One-In-Five Homeowners Feels “Underwater” On Mortgages

Multi-section ReportsFebruary 12, 2009

As Jobs Crisis Spreads, Worries Climb the Economic Ladder

For the public, the continuing financial crisis has been overtaken by a jobs crisis. The proportion of Americans citing jobs or unemployment as the nation’s most important economic problem has more than quadrupled – from 10% to 42% – since early October and job worries now far surpass concerns over the financial crisis. People’s […]

PublicationsFebruary 9, 2009

Support for Stimulus Plan Slips, But Obama Rides High

After weeks of intense debate over President Obama’s economic stimulus plan, a narrow majority of Americans (51%) who have heard about the $800 billion plan say it is a good idea, while 34% say it is a bad idea. In January, the balance of opinion regarding the plan was more positive: 57% of those […]

PublicationsJanuary 22, 2009

Economy, Jobs Trump All Other Policy Priorities In 2009

As Barack Obama takes office, the public’s focus is overwhelmingly on domestic policy concerns – particularly the economy. Strengthening the nation’s economy and improving the job situation stand at the top of the public’s list of domestic priorities for 2009. Meanwhile, the priority placed on issues such as the environment, crime, illegal immigration and […]

Multi-section ReportsDecember 11, 2008

Psychology of Bad Times Fueling Consumer Cutbacks

Americans continue to render extremely bleak assessments of economic conditions, both with respect to the national economy and their own financial situations. Fully 92% of the public rates the national economy as only fair or poor, and a substantial majority (61%) judges their personal finances that way. Both measures are among the most negative […]

Multi-section ReportsOctober 15, 2008

Public Not Desperate About Economy or Personal Finances

Americans are concerned about the nation’s economic problems almost to the exclusion of every other issue, and they register the lowest level of national satisfaction ever measured in a Pew Research Center survey. Just 11% say they are satisfied with the way things are going in the country – down 14 points in the […]

PublicationsJuly 1, 2008

As Gas Prices Pinch, Support for Energy Exploration Rises

Amid record gas prices, public support for greater energy exploration is spiking. Compared with just a few months ago, many more Americans are giving higher priority to more energy exploration, rather than more conservation. An increasing proportion also says that developing new sources of energy – rather than protecting the environment – is the […]

PublicationsFebruary 14, 2008

Economic Discontent Deepens as Inflation Concerns Rise

Summary of Findings Public views of the U.S. economy, already quite negative, have plummeted since January. Just 17% currently rate the nation’s economy as excellent or good, down from 26% last month. The percentage of Americans rating the economy as “poor” has increased even more dramatically, from 28% to 45% in one month. Moreover, there […]

CommentaryNovember 19, 2007

Tracking the Traders

In recent months, the U.S. stock market has seen record highs coupled with dramatic sell-offs, its volatility fueled by the sub-prime mortgage and credit crisis, the weak dollar, and oil prices heading toward $100 per barrel. At the same time, the public has grown increasingly worried about the state of the U.S. economy. Yet these […]

PublicationsOctober 11, 2007

Nation’s Real Estate Slump Hits Wealthy Areas

Summary of Findings Public assessments of the nation’s economy have fallen to a two-year low, and the nation’s economic outlook remains relatively gloomy. In particular, faced with a steady stream of negative news about the U.S. housing market, Americans are substantially less inclined than they were even a few months ago to say they expect […]

CommentarySeptember 13, 2007

A Nation of “Haves” and “Have-Nots”?

Over the past two decades, a growing share of the public has come to the view that American society is divided into two groups, the “haves” and the “have-nots.” Today, Americans are split evenly on the two-class question with as many saying the country is divided along economic lines as say this is not the […]

CommentaryApril 12, 2007

Money Walks

The Republican Party has traditionally garnered it strongest backing from wealthier voters. But the recent overall decline in Republican party affiliation nationwide has even taken a toll on GOP support among affluent voters. The latest Pew surveys find partisan parity among registered voters with annual family incomes in excess of roughly $135,000 per annum. Read […]

CommentaryJanuary 4, 2007

The Complicated Politics of Free Trade

Crafting effective U.S. trade policies in an era of rapid economic globalization is tough. But the politics of free trade are even tougher — particularly for Democrats, according to a recent national survey conducted by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press. Read the full analysis at pewresearch.org

PublicationsDecember 19, 2006

Free Trade Agreements Get a Mixed Review

Summary of Findings The American public continues to have a mixed opinion about free trade agreements such as NAFTA and the WTO. On balance they are seen as a good thing for the country, but Americans are divided over the impact of free trade agreements on their own personal financial situations. About as many people […]