Shutterstock

Despite deep concerns about our national finances, Americans think their cities and towns are doing all right.

While Americans remain anxious about global and national economic conditions, their views of their local economies are considerably more positive, according a Gallup survey released today. The chart below shows how respondents rate economic conditions in their city or community, state, the United States, Europe, and the world as a whole.

Americans' views of economic conditions get progressively better the closer they get to home. Almost half or respondents (49 percent) rate the economic conditions in the city or area they live as excellent or good, and only 15 percent rate them as poor. The percentage saying their state economy is excellent or good dips to 37 percent, while more than one in five (22 percent) say economic conditions in their state are poor. When it comes to the U.S. as a whole, just one in four rate conditions as excellent or good.  

Views on economic conditions vary considerably by region. This is not surprising given that some regions were much harder hit by the economic crisis. Local economic confidence is highest in the East, followed by the West, South, and Midwest. 

Democrats are more upbeat about local economics than Republicans, with Independents occupying the middle ground. 

Gallup also notes that:

This local positivity bias is not uncommon in surveys, but in this context suggests that the average American is not in as dire straits economically as would be thought based on national economic confidence ratings alone. These data are in line with previous research showing that Americans rate their personal financial situations more positively than they rate the national economic situation.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Equity

    Berlin Builds an Arsenal of Ideas to Stage a Housing Revolution

    The proposals might seem radical—from banning huge corporate landlords to freezing rents for five years—but polls show the public is ready for something dramatic.

  2. Design

    A History of the American Public Library

    A visual exploration of how a critical piece of social infrastructure came to be.

  3. A photo of a design maquette for the Obama Presidential Center planned for Jackson Park and designed by Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects with Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates.
    Design

    Why the Case Against the Obama Presidential Center Is So Important

    A judge has ruled that a lawsuit brought by Chicago preservationists can proceed, dealing a blow to Barack Obama's plans to build his library in Jackson Park.

  4. Maps

    Mapping the Growing Gap Between Job Seekers and Employers

    Mapping job openings with available employees in major U.S. cities reveals a striking spatial mismatch, according to a new Urban Institute report.

  5. Transportation

    You Can’t Design Bike-Friendly Cities Without Considering Race and Class

    Bike equity is a powerful tool for reducing inequality. Too often, cycling infrastructure is tailored only to wealthy white cyclists.