Tags: Gallup | confidence | US | Economy

Gallup Poll: Confidence in US Economy is Slipping

Americans' confidence in the U.S. economy fell in the week ending Feb. 19, the Gallup polling firm reports.

The Gallup Economic Confidence Index averaged minus-23 last week, down from minus-20 the week before.

"Deterioration in the job market may be partially to blame for this apparent deceleration in economic confidence, as Gallup finds U.S. unemployment rising to 9.0 percent thus far in February from 8.6 percent in January," Gallup reports.

Editor's Note: Meltdown on Main Street Coming, Prepare Now

Officially, the unemployment rate stands at 8.3 percent, although experts have said that figure is artificially low due to a shrinking labor force.

Those who are out of work and give up looking for jobs out of frustration are not counted as part of the labor force, and if they were counted, the number of people officially out of work would be much higher — and so would the headline unemployment rate.

There were almost four unemployed workers in December for each position waiting to be filled, according to Bloomberg.

When the Great Recession began in December 2007, two unemployed workers were competing for each opening.

"We’re very depressed relative to normal trend levels in terms of employment and output," says Michael Darda, chief market strategist at MKM Partners LP, according to Bloomberg.

"So you really do need a period of above-trend growth. That’s what the Federal Reserve is trying to do."

The Federal Reserve has injected the economy with liquidity and taken steps to keep interest rates as low as possible in order to kick-start the economy and lower unemployment rates.

Editor's Note: Meltdown on Main Street Coming, Prepare Now

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