Q1 Trend Monitor: MA consumer confidence edges upward; still strong reservations about national economy

View Trend Monitor (PDF) View  Crosstabs (PDF)

Massachusetts residents’ economic confidence is edging upward again after the toll taken by bruising partisan battles late last year, according to The MassINC Polling Group's MassPulse Quarterly Poll, released today. This quarter’s reading is 75.8, up from 67.3 in October of last year.

Massachusetts residents are starting to feel better about their own economic prospects, and are 16 points more likely to say they expect a positive financial situation (28 percent) than a negative one (12 percent). At the same time, though, just over half of Massachusetts consumers say bad economic times are ahead for the nation as a whole, while 32 percent expect good times. Unlike the other four measures, all of which have improved since last quarter, consumers’ views of national economic prospects are unchanged.

“While we are seeing a hiatus in the partisan budget warfare, many Massachusetts residents believe there is more to come,” said Steve Koczela, President of The MassINC Polling Group. “This is holding down the overall confidence measure from more substantial improvement.”

Confidence also continues to be unevenly felt across demographic subgroups, with Democrats far more optimistic than Republicans, and an even larger gap between those at opposite ends of the income spectrum.

Other highlights from the poll:

  • Majority think Massachusetts heading in right direction: 55 percent of resident think the Commonwealth is headed in the right direction, compared to 31 percent who think it is off on the wrong track. This represents the largest positive margin since MPG began asking the question in 2010.
  • More think Ed Markey should be replaced than re-elected: 43 percent think it’s time for a new junior senator from Massachusetts, compared to 30 percent who think the Malden Democrat has earned re-election based on his brief stint in the Senate.
  • Warren stays strong: Massachusetts’ senior Senator Elizabeth Warren is viewed favorably by a majority of registered voters (53 percent) and unfavorably by 29 percent.
  • Hope springs eternal for Patriots Nation: 43 percent of resident think the Pats will make the Super Bowl next year; 35 percent think they will win the big game.

[table id=3 /]