HPS Analysis

ESI: Economic Sentiment Hits All-Time Low Ahead Of Biden’s State Of The Union

Economic sentiment dropped over the past two weeks, matching one of Economic sentiment fell sharply over the past two weeks, to the lowest reading since the HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (ESI) began measuring the public’s opinion of the economy in 2013. The ESI decreased 2.4 points to 38.1.

All five of the ESI’s indicators dropped over the past two weeks, with two indicators hitting their all-time lows:

– Confidence in making a major purchase fell by 2.6 points to 23.8

– Confidence in buying a new home fell by 1.9 points to 25.2

The greatest decrease was in confidence in the overall U.S. economy, which fell 4.7 points to 34.3, just 0.1 points from that indicator’s all-time low. Confidence in finding a new job fell by 2 points to 52.1, and confidence in personal finances fell by 0.6 points to 55.2.  

Headlines have been dominated by the Russian invasion of Ukraine over the past two weeks, as governments impose new sanctions and private companies move to divest from Russian investments and products. President Biden’s average approval rating also hit a low of 40.4% on February 27, just two days ahead of his first State of the Union address. In his speech, Biden singled out inflation, which is at its highest rate in a decade, as his administration’s top priority ahead of the midterm elections this fall.

The ESI’s three-day moving average began this two-week stretch at 39.6 on February 16. It hit a low of 35.6 on February 26 amidst coverage of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and recovered almost entirely to 39.4 by the end of the period on March 1.

About the Index

The HPS-CivicScience Economic Sentiment Index (“ESI”) is a “living” index that measures U.S. adults’ expectations for the economy going forward, as well as their feelings about current conditions for major purchases. The primary goal of the Index is to accurately measure movements in overall national economic sentiment and to provide a more sophisticated alternative to existing economic sentiment indices. Unlike other prominent indices that release consumer sentiment estimates infrequently, the HPS-CivicScience Index is updated in real time as responses are collected continuously every hour, every day. Large-scale cross-tabulation of survey responses and consumer attributes enable more granular analyses than are currently possible through prevailing measures. For a more detailed overview of the Index and the underlying methodology, please request a white paper.

About CivicScience

CivicScience, Inc. provides the leading intelligent polling and real-time consumer insights platform, the InsightStore™. Its proprietary platform powers the world’s opinions and quickly gets that data to the decision makers who care. Every day, CivicScience polls ask millions of people questions related to thousands of topics, while its powerful data science and big data technology analyzes current consumer opinions, discovers trends as they start, and accurately predicts future behaviors and market outcomes. CivicScience polls run on hundreds of premier websites, in addition to its own public polling site at www.civicscience.com. CivicScience’s InsightStore™ is used by leading enterprises in marketing research, advertising, media, financial services, and political polling. For more information, visit CivicScience by clicking here and follow them on Twitter – @CivicScience.

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