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Friday, Oct. 24, 2014

Optimism on the rise for job seekers

Compiled by Michael De Groote, Deseret News National Edition

Published: Sat, July 19 4:05 a.m. MDT

 In this June 13, 2012 file photo, Maria Wilt, center, talks to a recruiter at a job fair expo in Anaheim, Calif.

In this June 13, 2012 file photo, Maria Wilt, center, talks to a recruiter at a job fair expo in Anaheim, Calif.

(Jae C. Hong, Associated Press)

The percentage of Americans who believe people can find good jobs is the highest it has been since the beginning of the recession back in December 2007, a new Gallup poll says.

"More than one in three Americans (35 percent) say now is a good time to find a quality job," Gallup reported Wednesday. "The jobs measure has been improving in the past few months, and increased seven percentage points between June and July alone."

A similar poll Gallup took back in March 2013 found only 22 percent thought it was a good time to find a quality job — leaving 74 percent who thought otherwise.

To give some more perspective, 45 percent of Americans were optimistic toward jobs nine months before December 2007. Two years later, in March 2009, a measly 9 percent were optimistic.

"Gallup did not measure this trend in earlier periods such as the dot-com boom of the late 1990s," says California's Central Valley Business Times, "when it could have been even higher."

Gallup says the recent optimism about jobs has increased among all major demographic groups — but there are some differences. Democrats are particularly giddy about it being a good time to find a job (43 percent) compared to less enthusiastic independents (34 percent) and Republicans (27 percent).

"Democrats have been more positive than Republicans about jobs since President Barack Obama came into office," Gallup reports, "while Republicans were more positive than Democrats when George W. Bush was in office."

The most optimistic group about finding those great jobs are younger Americans, ages 18 to 29, with 49 percent thinking this is the time to find quality employment.

Yet, as the Federal Reserve Bank of New York reported, college graduates are facing less optimistic prospects for landing quality jobs. "Moreover, the quality of the jobs held by the underemployed has declined, with today's recent graduates increasingly accepting low-wage jobs or working part-time."

Nevertheless, Gallup says that the increased optimism is a promising sign for the economy.

Email: mdegroote@deseretnews.com

Twitter: @degroote

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1. Bob A. Bohey
Marlborough, MA,
July 19, 2014

Something else to blame President Obama for!

2. Utes Fan
Salt Lake City, UT,
July 19, 2014

Just when you thought it was safe to be optimistic, Microsoft announces 18,000 layoffs. Granted, that is a drop in the bucket compared to the actual number of unemployed, but announcements like that can begin a downturn in the hiring of companies. I hope that doesn't happen.