The folks at Gallup are out with more good news this morning:
“Optimism About Availability of Good Jobs Hits New Heights. Sixty-seven percent of Americans believe that now is a good time to find a quality job in the U.S., the highest percentage in 17 years of Gallup polling. … Americans in all age, income and education groups are decidedly more positive about the job market now than before Trump's election. . . With unemployment continuing to drop, Americans now survey the job market with a higher level of confidence that jobs are available and that the jobs are ones worth having.”
This follows a new CBS News poll yesterday showing that “nearly 2 in 3 Americans think the nation's economy is in good shape. . .”
And—rule of threes—it comes after a separate Gallup survey showing that Americans are more satisfied with the way things are going in the country than they have been in nearly 13 years.
If you look at some of the great economic news from just the past week, it is not hard to figure out why Americans are feeling so optimistic:
- 21%: With tax reform, companies are investing in their businesses at higher rates, with a 21 percent jump in first-quarter capital expenditures compared to the same period last year. It’s the biggest increase in nearly seven years. One analyst said tax reform will help business investment “take off and for longer.”
- 48: Jobless claims continue to hover near a 48-year low. The unemployment rate is at its lowest level since December 2000.
- 0.7%: Industrial production rose in April for the third straight month, “another sign the economy is gaining momentum.”
- 0.3%: Retail sales rose in April for the second straight month as “the recent tax overhaul helped buoy spending.”
- 72%: Nearly three in four manufacturers are increasing employee wages or benefits, according to the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM.) “Manufacturing in America is now rising to new heights, thanks to tax reform,” the chair of NAM’s board said.
- 17: Starting in July, customers of 17 Pennsylvania utility companies will see lower rates because of tax reform, with the state’s public utility commission calling the savings from tax reform “extraordinary and substantial.” All told, utility companies in 48 states and DC have taken action to pass their federal tax savings on to their customers.
- 150: The federal government has approved 150 areas in Louisiana to become opportunity zones, a part of the new tax law that will foster more private investment in distressed areas. Gov. John Bel Edwards (D-LA) noted that these opportunity zones are “new tools at our disposal to bring much-needed investment and new jobs to the areas of Louisiana who most need them.”
On Thursday, Speaker Ryan talked about some of this good news, saying, “A thriving economy means there are more job openings. A thriving economy means there are more opportunities. A thriving economy means families get ahead, people get out of poverty, kids come out of college with opportunities and offerings. That’s what a thriving economy means.”
Read more from our by the numbers series:
Four More Reasons to Feel Good About The Economy
May These Four Numbers Be With You
Tax Reform Lifting Outlooks for Consumers and Businesses
Tax Reform Continues to Help Families, Drive Momentum
Tax Reform Keeps Delivering for America’s Workers