The IBD/TIPP Economic Optimism Index improved by 3.0 points, or 7.8%, in November, posting 41.4 vs. 38.4 in October. The index is 3.6 points below its 12-month average of 45.0, 3.0 points below its reading of 44.4 in December 2007 when the economy entered the recession, and 8.1 points below its all-time average of 49.5.
Note: Index readings above 50 indicate optimism; below 50 indicate pessimism.
The IBD/TIPP Economic Optimism Index has a good track record of foreshadowing the confidence indicators put out later each month by the University of Michigan and The Conference Board. IBD/TIPP conducted the national poll of 919 adults from October 26 to October 30. The margin of error is +/-3.3 percentage points.
The IBD/TIPP Economic Optimism Index has three key components. This month, all three components increased.
•The Six-Month Economic Outlook, a measure of how consumers feel about the economy’s prospects in the next six months, improved 2.3 points, or 6.4%, to 38.1. The sub-index was 32.1 when the economy entered the last recession in December 2007.
•The Personal Financial Outlook, a measure of how Americans feel about their own finances in the next six months, gained 3.9 points, or 8.1%, to 52.2.
•Confidence in Federal Economic Policies, a proprietary IBD/TIPP measure of views on how government economic policies are working, rose 2.6 points, or 8.3%, to 33.8.
“Consumer confidence continues to be in a negative territory, for the thirteenth month in a row. Fifty-five percent think that the U.S. is still in a recession. While 57% feel the economy is not improving, 41% think the economy is improving. Seven percent of households have at least one person whose work hours have been cut or limited to fewer than 30 hours per week, as a result of ObamaCare, in the past 12 months,” said Raghavan Mayur, president of TIPP, a unit of TechnoMetrica Market Intelligence, IBD's polling partner.
This month, three of the 21 demographic groups that IBD/TIPP tracks were above 50 on the Economic Optimism Index. Eighteen groups improved and three declined.
On the Economic Outlook component, only one of the 21 groups that IBD/TIPP tracks scored in optimistic territory. Sixteen groups improved and five declined.
On the Personal Financial component, fifteen of the 21 groups IBD/TIPP tracks scored in optimistic territory. Twenty groups increased and one decreased.
On the Federal Policies component, two of the 21 demographic groups tracked were above 50. Fifteen groups advanced on the component, five declined and one did not change.