Americans Think Obama Is Helping The Economy, Approval Rating Up 5 Points

| by Edward Arnold
President Barack Obama.President Barack Obama.

Pew Research Center has found that, for the first time since 2009, Americans think President Barack Obama has improved the economy instead of hurt it.

As of January, 38 percent of Americans believe Obama's economic policies have made conditions better, 28 percent believe he has made the economy worse, and 30 percent think his policies haven't had much of an effect.

Since January of 2014, the poll showed an 11 percent increase in Americans thinking the economy has improved, with a 15 percent drop in Americans thinking the economy is doing poorly.

Additionally, Obama's approval rating has risen five points since December, up to 47 percent. In 2014, his rating changed little.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the president launched a three-day tour last week, declaring that the U.S. economy is rebounding. His state of the union address is Jan. 20 and will most certainly illuminate the economic progress America  witnessed over the last year.

With the stock market skyrocketing and gas prices down, Americans have seen signs that might have contributed to this change in perception of the economy.

But all is not perfect. The poll also found 55 percent of Americans say that their family's income is falling behind the cost of living, with only 6 percent declaring that their incomes are rising. Last January, 57 percent said they were falling behind, showing only a 2 percent increase this year.

So while the economy is recovering, the middle class is not seeing the results hit home. Whether or not this continues, only time will tell. It could depend on if the Obama administration rolls out new economic reforms to create jobs or if they let the free market expand on its own.

On that issue, the poll found that 49 percent think Obama is doing the right thing with his economic policies, but 50 percent are not confident in his policies.

Source: Pew Research, The Wall Street Journal / Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons