U.S. Economy Adds 162,000 Jobs in July, but Most Americans Feel Stuck

Matt Berman

The new jobs report out today from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that the economy added 162,000 jobs in July, missing expectations of around 183,000, according to a poll of economists. The unemployment rate fell to 7.4 percent, and revisions to the May and June jobs reports resulted in 26,000 fewer jobs than were previously reported.

This doesn't give much hope to most Americans. According to a new Quinnipiac poll out Friday morning, Americans feel stuck with the slow state of the economic recovery.

In the poll, 73 percent described the U.S. economy as "not so good" or "poor." That's broken down here:

 

View photos

(Quinnipiac)

 

The divisions here are striking. Far more Democrats (40 percent) than Republicans (12 percent) describe the state of the economy as "good," as do far more black Americans (40 percent) than whites (21 percent) or Hispanics (27 percent). That racial disparity is despite a 12.6 percent unemployment rate for black Americans, 6.6 percent for white Americans, and 9.4 percent for Hispanics in Friday's BLS report.

And a majority of Americans aren't feeling too optimistic about the overall trend of the economy:

 

View photos

(Quinnipiac)

While there is still a large partisan and racial divide for the "better" or "worse" responses, large numbers of Americans across the board seem to feel stuck with how the economy is now--which, although obviously better than it was a couple years ago, with 7.4 percent unemployment still isn't too great.

Overall, though, President Obama is still beating out Republicans in Congress on the question of who Americans "trust to do a better job handling the economy:"

 

View photos

(Quinnipiac)

With the president on a nationwide tour giving speeches and laying out a plan for how to improve the economy, and with Republican support on this question dropping from 43 percent in late May, momentum appears to be in Obama's favor.

The Quinnipiac University survey was taken from July 28-31, with a margin of error of 2.6 percentage points.