Optimism about the economy stalls - poll

CNN/Opinion Research poll shows more people see economic conditions as poor.

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By Paul Steinhauser, CNN Deputy Political Director

301 Moved Permanently

301 Moved Permanently


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How will the economy fare in the second half of 2009?
  • It will get worse
  • It will get better
  • It will stay about the same

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A new national poll indicates that nearly half of all Americans think the economy has stabilized, but only one in eight believes that a recovery has started.

Four in 10 questioned in the CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Thursday morning think the country's still in an economic downturn.

"Although polls in recent months have shown some signs of growing optimism, that appears to have stalled," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "In January, 50% said the economy was in very poor shape; that figure dropped to 37% in April, but now it has risen slightly, to 41%."

"The prevailing view? We're in a stall," said CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider.

The poll suggests that when it comes to an economic recovery, Americans agree with President Barack Obama. Discussing the economy last week at a news conference at the White House, Obama said, "We're still not at actual recovery yet. So I anticipate that this is going to be a difficult, difficult year."

One in five questioned said the economic conditions in the country today are good, up 9 points from March.

The economy remains the No. 1 issue on Americans' minds, but that figure has dropped 12 points from March.

"When asked to name the most important issue besides the economy, Americans name health care, followed by the federal deficit and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan," Holland added.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted Friday through Sunday, with 1,026 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points. To top of page

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