Political Capital

Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index

U.S. Park Rangers at the Lincoln Memorial on the National Mall on October 17, 2013 in Washington, DC.

Photograph by Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

U.S. Park Rangers at the Lincoln Memorial on the National Mall on October 17, 2013 in Washington, DC.

Bloomberg by the Numbers: 47%

That’s the share of Americans who project the economy will worsen, according to the Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index expectations gauge for October. That’s the largest such share since the collapse of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. in 2008, Bloomberg’s Ben Schenkel...

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Protesters demonstrate in front of the Capitol in Washington, DC, on October 3, 2013, urging congress to end the federal government shutdown.

Photograph by Jewel Samad/AFP via Getty Images

Protesters demonstrate in front of the Capitol in Washington, DC, on October 3, 2013, urging congress to end the federal government shutdown.

Bloomberg by the Numbers: -32

That’s Gallup’s U.S. Economic Confidence Index for Sept. 30-Oct. 2. Gallup’s index, which is based on Americans’ assessments of current economic conditions and perceptions of whether the economy is getting better or worse, fell 13 points from minus 19 on...

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Pedestrians are reflected in a shop window advertising "Prime Retail Space Available" in New York, on July 24, 2013.

Photograph by Scott Eells/Bloomberg

Pedestrians are reflected in a shop window advertising "Prime Retail Space Available" in New York, on July 24, 2013.

Politics Blur Consumer Confidence: Influence of Measures Lessened

The American public’s views of the economy are increasingly colored by politics, making consumer sentiment a less reliable gauge of the outlook for the spending that drives growth. Self-identified Democrats and Republicans surveyed for the Bloomberg Comfort Index are showing...

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Job seekers wait in line to meet with employers at the 25th Annual CUNY big Apple Job and Internship Fair in New York City.

Photograph by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Job seekers wait in line to meet with employers at the 25th Annual CUNY big Apple Job and Internship Fair in New York City.

Bloomberg by the Numbers: 335,500

That’s the average number of people applying for unemployment benefits in the past four weeks, the least since November 2007. About 333,000 people made first-time jobless claims in the week ended Aug. 3, compared with 328,000, 345,000 and 336,000 in...

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Shoppers wait in line during the grand opening of the Fashion Outlets of Chicago mall in Rosemont, Illinois, on Aug. 1, 2013.

Photograph by Tim Boyle/Bloomberg

Shoppers wait in line during the grand opening of the Fashion Outlets of Chicago mall in Rosemont, Illinois, on Aug. 1, 2013.

Bloomberg by the Numbers: -27

That’s the Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index for the week ended July 28, the strongest reading in 5 ½ years. The index — ranging from 100 to minus 100 and based on Americans’ views about the economy, their personal finances and...

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Job seekers pick up fliers advertising jobs in Los Angeles, California.

Photograph by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Job seekers pick up fliers advertising jobs in Los Angeles, California.

Bloomberg by the Numbers: 44%

That’s how many Americans say it will be “a long time” before the national economy recovers, according to the Pew Research Center. That compares with 28 percent who say the economy is recovering and 26 percent who say it will...

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Shoppers on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, California.

Photograph by Patrick Fallon/Bloomberg

Shoppers on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, California.

Bloomberg by the Numbers: 283

That’s how many weeks since the Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index was higher than last week’s reading. The index rose to minus 27.5 in the period ended June 30 from minus 28.3 a week earlier to reach its highest level since...

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Shoppers at an outdoor mall in San Antonio, Texas.

Photograph by Jennifer Whitney/Bloomberg

Shoppers at an outdoor mall in San Antonio, Texas.

Bloomberg by the Numbers: -32.5

That’s the Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index average this year, the highest since 2007. The weekly gauge can range from 100 to minus 100 and is based on Americans’ views about the national economy, their personal finances and the buying climate....

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A home under construction in Glenelg, Maryland, on May 30, 2013.

Photograph by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

A home under construction in Glenelg, Maryland, on May 30, 2013.

Bloomberg by the Numbers: 24%

That’s the share of Americans who have a positive feeling about the national economy, according to the Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index for the week ended June 2. While more than three-fourths of respondents said the economy was either “not so...

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Wanda Doerksen squeegees the patio doors of her home as she prepares for an open house in Eugene, Oregon.

Photograph by Ty Wright/Bloomberg

Wanda Doerksen squeegees the patio doors of her home as she prepares for an open house in Eugene, Oregon.

Bloomberg by the Numbers: -20.7

That’s the Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index among homeowners, the highest reading in more than five years. The index was minus 44.7 among renters. It was minus 29.4 for all respondents in the week ended May 19, compared to minus 30.2...

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