A quick political check (politics, not policy): as perception about the economy improves, so does Obama's re-elect numbers.
The U.S. economy will grow at a higher rate in 2012 than it did this past year, although unemployment will fall minimally from its current rate of 8.6 percent, according to a survey of economists by the AP.
Economists expect that the country will create 177,000 jobs a month through to Election Day in 2012, up from an average of 132,000 jobs a month in 2011.
The Gallup Economic Confidence Index has averaged -38 thus far in December, up from -45 in November -- putting December on track to be the most positive month for consumer attitudes since June. However, confidence remains depressed in comparison to the already weak levels seen from January through March.
Contrast this with yesterday's post on the Gallup tracker (Gallup: Obama's numbers inch up
) and note the May bump in approval:
For the first time in six months, Gallup's daily tracker is showing Obama's job approval higher than his disapproval.
The economic outlook could certainly be better, but it also certainly could be worse.
The same could be said for Obama's re-election process (currently at 51.9 on Intrade, the just-for-fun reference.)