According to a poll conducted by the IBD/TIPP, a large portion of the American public has become extremely negative about the economic situation they are currently experiencing. The American economy has come under increasing pressure due to the spread of the coronavirus and subsequent economic shutdowns.

The poll, known as the “Economic Optimism Index”, uses variables regarding short-term economic prospects, governmental policy performance, and personal finance outlooks to estimate optimism within the American population.

The poll is used to measure the levels of optimism concerning the economy. A score of less than 50 indicates that there is growing pessimism within the public concerning the situation that the economy is currently undergoing.

This is a decrease in confidence unlike what had been previously experienced in October, where optimism was reflected for the first time since February 2020 with a score of 55.2.

The survey was conducted before news released of a vaccine developed by the pharmaceutical company Pfizer. This does come, however, at a time when coronavirus cases have once again begun to surge in the country.

There remains a stark contrast in the optimism levels of the demographics within the country. Those earning more than 75 thousand per annum are optimistic about the economic outlook whereas others hold a more pessimistic view.

Ever since the virus began to spread, the US has experienced a large number of unemployment claims. However, the economy has recovered to add nearly 640 thousand jobs in October. This has come at a time where unemployment benefits have begun to diminish.

According to the poll, nearly half of the households in the survey currently reported a minimum of one person actively looking for a full-time job whereas approximately 40% fear losing their job.

The results of the 2020 presidential elections have also swayed optimism within the country. Whereas supporters of the Republican Party reported growing economic pessimism after the loss of Donald Trump, Democrats have grown optimistic following the news that Democratic candidate Joe Biden had clinched the election.