CNN/ORC Poll: Jump in percentage of those saying things not going well
November 29th, 2013
06:00 AM ET
10 months ago

CNN/ORC Poll: Jump in percentage of those saying things not going well

Washington (CNN) – Americans views on the state of the nation are turning increasingly sour, according to a new national poll.

And a CNN/ORC International survey released Friday also indicates that less than a quarter of the public says that economic conditions are improving, while nearly four in ten say the nation's economy is getting worse.

Forty-one percent of those questioned in the poll say things are going well in the country today, down nine percentage points from April, and the lowest that number has been in CNN polling since February 2012. Fifty-nine percent say things are going badly, up nine points from April.

Besides an obvious partisan divide, which contributes to a urban-rural gap, the survey also indicates a difference of opinion between younger and older Americans.

"There's a slight generational divide, with 46% of those under age 50 saying things are going well. That number drops to 36% for those 50 and older," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

Looking specifically at the economy, 39% feel that the economy is still in a downturn, up six points from April. Only 24% believe that an economic recovery is under way. Thirty-six percent are in the middle - they don't think we're in a recovery but they believe conditions have stabilized.

Again, the survey indicates partisan and geographic divides, as well as a generational gap, with 45% of those age 50 and older, but only 34% of those under age 50 saying the economy's still in a downturn.

The poll was conducted November 18-20 for CNN by ORC International, with 843 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.


Filed under: Economy
soundoff (196 Responses)
  1. Kevin

    Only 24% says economy is improving LOL? I guess they spent too much time watching FOXNews and getting stupefied instead of out there looking for a job.

    We are not booming yet but we are doing very well – housing recovered, stock market record high, unemployment keeps dropping.

    Maybe it's time to look at yourself instead of blaming the government if you still can't find a job at times like this.

    November 29, 2013 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  2. Willers

    It is amazing that while Republicans (like many of the dishonest trolls who have posted here) have done everything possible to deliberately make American life turn sour–partisan obstructionism, dishonesty, scapegoating, shutting down the government, acting inhumanely toward the disadvantaged, treasonous behavior toward the U.S.), they now have the audacity to claim that Obama and the administration is the cause. The hypocrisy of Republicans is mind-boggling. And any media that buys this hypocrisy is equally to blame.

    November 29, 2013 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  3. srcactus

    Those that have experienced real prosperity are older and have had more visible life episodes to guide their opinions. That said the economy has been mostly lack luster since the 70's. Bill Clinton was the last President to have a good growth economy for several reasons. Until and unless our government focuses on economic issues we cannot have a vibrant economy and increasing wealth for the majority of citizens. Wages are not doing real well but home values and retirement plans are being kicked aside while we debate abortion and gay marriage on the national stage. We need to be able to have more than one subject debated at a time and more financial issues deferred to the States for resolution.
    Less partisan politics and more hard nose business being done for all of the people not the loudest little special interest groups.

    November 29, 2013 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  4. asa tift

    stock market soars highest just before the crash...1929 anyone? the dollar as the world reserve currency, it's time is coming to a close. google history of world reserve currencies- prepare for a world economy paradigm shift- the IMF, Moody's, Standard & Poor, Harvard business school provost, etc expect the chinese economy to surpass the us within 10 years. the dollar pushed aside as world reserve currency and yuan takes over (no different than the dollar did to the british pound in 1945). devaluation of the us dollar will continue, diversify your portfolios to include emerging international markets (hang seng, nikkei, etc). once the fed reserve (again research who are the key players in the fed...many will be surprised to learn the fed is privately held by the world's 1%-ers- no conspiracy theory, that's just the truth, many folks wrongly believe the fed is govt owned and operated- it is NOT). superlow interest rates help people get loans but the reduced rates short the money put back into the banking system, this keeps the economy on life support- it does not grow the economy. low rates actually bolster foreign currency infusion b/c stronger foreign money capitalizes on the low us dollar and low domestic rates. the us will quietly be pushed off the pedestal, just as what happened in spain years ago and britain in the 1940s. look at historical monetary exchange rates (mexican peso to dollar, canadian loonie to the dollar, etc). don't be chicken little spouting how the sky is falling but DO plan ahead you can actually make money in the long run by taking advantage of the situation once you know what is really going on.

    November 29, 2013 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  5. USA Going Really Down

    Who cares if things are not going well. Let's just go and attack another country and kill innocent people. That should make Americans feel good.

    November 29, 2013 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  6. srcactus

    word omitted: NON as in We need tobe able to have more than one subject debated at a time and more NON financial issues etc. etc.

    November 29, 2013 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  7. mike

    This is what the GOP/Tea party wants – they sabatage things so nothing improves than say that we will only work to do things to improve america if you elect us – but that just means they will do what ever benifits those that finance there campaigns

    November 29, 2013 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  8. Pirate

    Stock market is at an all time high. It's greed. The 1% are hogging the wealth and abusing the system and there is no valid argument against this.

    November 29, 2013 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  9. T.Storm

    Really??? What a window to the obvious.... America not doing well? Well, when wages are stagnant & the government wants to mandate for everyone to spend a huge chunk of change on insurance,... which many will find out they don't qualify for the government subsidies & simply can not afford the rates & keeping their families fed & housed,... go figure...

    November 29, 2013 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  10. hannah

    I have an idea, let's elect more "conservatives" so we can have more wars. That will solve the problem. The conservative congress has been stopping all the jobs bills so they can now say the country is a mess, but when they get power, they deregualte so that we have more boom and bust ecnomies and who benefits? The people at the top.

    November 29, 2013 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  11. rick

    Who started this mess?l Every one has their opinion. What started this mess is the corporate CEO's who sent the American jobs overseas. The same ones who support the politicians in office. These jobs won't be coming back any time soon because our infamous politicians have most if not all their assets overseas.

    November 29, 2013 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  12. NFL1

    We would be improving a WHOLE lot faster if the Tea Party/GOP would not obstruct things like the jobs bill, road construction, breaks for the middle class to have more money to SPEND and other bills that would spur the economy.

    November 29, 2013 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  13. Paul

    The republicans are the masters of spreading bad news. They have done absolutely nothing except block, delay, and obstruct anything to help the economy. Another way to look at this poll is that 60 percent say the economy is holding steady or getting better. Is your glass half empty or half full? Republicans always choose the negative half.

    November 29, 2013 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  14. Scott

    What we need is the truth. Americans can handle the truth. We can make an informed decision based on truth. We may not like it but we then can go the path we chose with the truth. The government and news media only tell us what story's they think we will believe only to find out they lied.( aka did not explain well. ). Still a lie. Write your congressman and senators and whitehouse and demand the truth

    November 29, 2013 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  15. rell87

    The employment situation is the worst it has been since the pathetic Carter administration. Democrats just hit Americans with the largest tax increase on the middle class and working poor in history. The Fed is creating money at an unprecedented rate, artificially inflating the stock market and keeping interest rates ridiculously low. Deliberately devaluing the savings of every hard-working American. Gas and energy prices have skyrocketed, forcing the normally mobile US population to stop roaming the highways and give up on traveling long distance to visit family and friends.
    This century has brought a steady decline in American prosperity.

    November 29, 2013 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  16. Chukch

    I am really wondering why statistics say one thing and your polling say something different. This is why the media does a disservice to the nation , then want us to believe a disparity exist. Promoting lies and untruths has consequences.

    November 29, 2013 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  17. swatguy

    Kevin, you really need to get those rose colored glasses cleaned if you think our economy is better off....or better yet, make an appointment through Obamacare for an eye exam...oh wait...

    November 29, 2013 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  18. Anonymous

    Of course the polls are going to show this. Controversy is what sells. Real polls should be done on the internet where hundreds of thousands of people from all over the country could respond. Then you would get a true sampling. Asking a few hundred carefully selected people a few questions is not going to give a real picture of the whole country. This kind of polling is going the way of the dinosaur.

    November 29, 2013 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  19. Ron L

    Why is this a surprise to anyone, there are so many Americans BEARLY SURVIVING earning only $10.00 an hour or less, needing SNAP assistance even though they have a job! At the same time those that are wealthy are seeing there net worth grow 15 to 20% per year!! Many of the highly profitable companies that could afford to raise their employees wages refuse because they feel no compassion toward there workers. Even the Pope has recently stated that the idea of trickle down economics is flawed. When is the Congress going to raise the minimum wage to at least $10.00 an hour? That change alone will help the economy grow at least 1% and reduce the unemployment close to the same if not more.

    November 29, 2013 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  20. FubarObama

    And the buck stops at the presidents desk

    November 29, 2013 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  21. John

    Ask yourself how Main Street is doing? We currently have almost 50 million people on food stamps, and it is still increasing. Part-time jobs are being created in huge numbers, while trying to find a full-time job is becoming almost impossible. Hours at work are being cut.

    Anyone saying things are getting better is truly an idiot.

    November 29, 2013 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  22. jim rudlang

    Duh!!!! With the entire political leadership we have in place it is purely obvious we will be anthird world country very soon. My God. Wake up citizen of America.

    November 29, 2013 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  23. Jason

    What's the old saying about if it looks too good to be true?

    November 29, 2013 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  24. davey

    I am actually doing very well. I wasn't so sure until several posters (PMOPB) informed me that I was rich. I had never realized this so I feel better.

    November 29, 2013 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  25. William1444

    The USA will never recover from the bush – republican depression they caused from 2001 to 2006 with their two fraudulent decades long wars and their stealing trillions of tax dollars, with republicans shipping 20,000,000 good paying US manufacturing jobs to the communist chinese, with republicans bringing in 20,000,000 illegals to take jobs of American workers, with tax cuts for the rich that caused huge deficits, with no regulation of the wall street gambling and real estate mortgage frauds of aig and bankers.

    November 29, 2013 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
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