Americans ' confidence in the economy worsened in the month of July, the lowest it has been since April, according to a new Gallup Poll.
Gallup's Economic Confidence Index slipped to -12 in July, down from -8 in June and -7 in May. The Index has a maximum of +100, reached if all Americans rate current economic conditions as excellent or good, and say the economy is getting better. The possible minimum of -100 is reached if all rate the current economy as poor, and say the economy is getting worse. The decline in consumers' confidence is most likely related to weak job growth, volatile gas prices, and worries about rising interest rates. Most of the jobs created in the US during the month of July were part-time or low-paying-- or both. "The jobs that are being created are not generating much income," Steven Ricchiuto, chief economist at Mizuho Securities USA, wrote in a note to clients. Some 6.6 million workers say they want a job but don't count as unemployed because they aren't actively looking, a number that has barely budged in the past year. According to Associated Press data, 80 percent of American adults face near-poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives. With 46.2 million Americans, that constitute 15 percent of the US population, living below the line of poverty, over 19 million whites, or 41 percent of the nation’s destitute, are poor.