American Research Group, Inc.

 

April 21, 2016

Americans Remain Split on Obama Overall Job Approval

A total of 48% of Americans say they approve of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as president and 48% say they disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job according to the latest survey from the American Research Group. In March, 47% approved and 49% disapproved.

When it comes to Obama's handling of the economy, 46% of Americans approve and 51% disapprove. In March, 47% approved and 48% disapproved.

Among Americans registered to vote, 49% approve of the way Obama is handling his job as president and 47% disapprove. On Obama's handling of the economy, 47% of registered voters approve and 49% disapprove.

A total of 17% of Americans say they expect the financial situations in their households will be worse in a year. This is the lowest for this question since October 2012.

The results presented here are based on 1,100 completed interviews conducted among a nationwide random sample of adults 18 years and older (see methodology for details). The interviews were completed April 17 through 20, 2016. The theoretical margin of error for the total sample is plus or minus 2.6 percentage points, 95% of the time, on questions where opinion is evenly split.

Overall, 48% of Americans say that they approve of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as president, 48% disapprove, and 4% are undecided.

Obama job approval Approve Disapprove Undecided
Apr 201648%48%4%
Mar 2016 47% 49% 4%
Feb 2016 45% 50% 5%
Jan 2016 45% 51% 4%
Dec 2015 41% 55% 4%
Nov 2015 43% 54% 3%
Oct 2015 49% 48% 3%
Sep 2015 46% 51% 3%
Aug 2015 47% 50% 3%
Jul 2015 47% 50% 3%
Jun 2015 47% 49% 4%
May 2015 48% 47% 5%
Apr 2015 44% 50% 6%

Among Republicans (26% of adults registered to vote in the survey and 23% of all adults in the survey), 12% approve of the way Obama is handling his job and 85% disapprove. Among Democrats (35% of adults registered to vote in the survey and 31% of all adults in the survey), 83% approve and 12% disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job. Among independents (39% of adults registered to vote in the survey and 34% of all adults in the survey), 42% approve and 53% disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job as president.

Overall, 46% of Americans say that they approve of the way Barack Obama is handling the economy, 51% disapprove, and 3% are undecided. Among registered voters, 47% approve and 49% disapprove of the way Obama is handling the economy.

Obama handling the economy Approve Disapprove Undecided
Apr 201646%51%3%
Mar 2016 47% 48% 5%
Feb 2016 45% 49% 6%
Jan 2016 42% 51% 7%
Dec 2015 40% 55% 5%
Nov 2015 44% 52% 4%
Oct 2015 50% 47% 3%
Sep 2015 45% 51% 4%
Aug 2015 48% 47% 5%
Jul 2015 47% 47% 6%
Jun 2015 45% 51% 4%
May 2015 49% 46% 5%
Apr 2015 45% 49% 6%

Among Republicans, 10% approve of the way Obama is handling the economy and 87% disapprove. Among Democrats, 81% approve of the way Obama is handling the economy and 14% disapprove. Among independents, 41% approve and 56% disapprove of the way Obama is handling the economy.

A total of 35% of Americans say that the national economy is getting better, 23% say it is staying the same, and 36% say the national economy is getting worse.

National economy

Getting better

Staying the same

Getting worse

Undecided

Apr 201635%23%36%6%
Mar 2016 31% 25% 37% 7%
Feb 2016 34% 24% 34% 8%
Jan 2016 34% 23% 33% 10%
Dec 2015 30% 30% 32% 8%
Nov 2015 34% 29% 31% 6%
Oct 2015 40% 30% 25% 5%
Sep 2015 39% 31% 26% 4%
Aug 2015 41% 29% 21% 9%
Jul 2015 31% 31% 37% 1%
Jun 2015 37% 24% 38% 1%
May 2015 44% 15% 40% 1%
Apr 2015 36% 23% 37% 4%

Among those saying they approve of the way Obama is handling his job, 70% say getting better, 15% say staying the same, and less than 8% say getting worse. Of those saying they disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job, less than 2% say getting better, 29% say staying the same, and 65% say getting worse.

A total of 37% of Americans say they believe the national economy will be better a year from now, 34% say it will be the same, and 19% say it will be worse.

National economy a year from now

Better than today

The same as today

Worse than today

Undecided

Apr 201637%34%19%10%
Mar 2016 33% 37% 26% 4%
Feb 2016 33% 35% 27% 5%
Jan 2016 30% 35% 32% 3%
Dec 2015 27% 35% 36% 2%
Nov 2015 30% 32% 35% 3%
Oct 2015 38% 29% 30% 3%
Sep 2015 38% 29% 31% 2%
Aug 2015 35% 32% 31% 2%
Jul 2015 35% 27% 35% 3%
Jun 2015 36% 31% 26% 7%
May 2015 32% 30% 30% 8%
Apr 2015 34% 27% 38% 1%

Among those saying they approve of the way Obama is handling his job, 56% say better, 30% say the same as today, and 5% say worse than today. Among those saying they disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job as president, 16% say better, 40% say the same, and 35% say worse.

Overall, 28% of Americans say they believe that the national economy is in a recession, 49% say they do not believe the economy is in a recession, and 23% are undecided.

National economy in a recession Yes No Undecided
Apr 201628%49%23%
Mar 2016 29% 50% 21%
Feb 2016 30% 51% 19%
Jan 2016 31% 49% 20%
Dec 2015 35% 44% 21%
Nov 2015 31% 46% 23%
Oct 2015 29% 48% 23%
Sep 2015 29% 47% 24%
Aug 2015 32% 49% 19%
Jul 2015 25% 43% 32%
Jun 2015 30% 58% 12%
May 2015 30% 57% 13%
Apr 2015 41% 45% 14%

Among those saying they approve of the way Obama is handling his job, 8% say the national economy is in a recession, 72% say the national economy is not in a recession, and 20% are undecided. Of those saying they disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job, 50% say the national economy is in a recession, 24% say the national economy is not in a recession, and 26% are undecided.

A total of 52% of Americans rate the national economy as excellent, very good, or good and 46% rate it as bad, very bad, or terrible.

National economy

Excellent

Very good

Good

Bad

Very bad

Terrible

Undecided

Apr 20168%17%27%22%13%11%2%
Mar 2016 8% 11% 28% 28% 13% 11% 1%
Feb 2016 9% 9% 32% 26% 13% 10% 1%
Jan 2016 9% 10% 31% 28% 11% 10% 1%
Dec 2015 8% 12% 29% 30% 11% 9% 1%
Nov 2015 8% 14% 31% 29% 8% 9% 1%
Oct 2015 9% 16% 36% 25% 8% 5% 1%
Sep 2015 8% 18% 38% 23% 7% 5% 1%
Aug 2015 11% 15% 32% 31% 6% 4% 1%
Jul 2015 5% 19% 38% 18% 9% 10% 1%
Jun 2015 6% 15% 37% 23% 6% 12% 1%
May 2015 7% 15% 32% 26% 8% 11% 1%
Apr 2015 9% 15% 32% 19% 10% 14% 1%

Among those saying they approve of the way Obama is handling his job, 90% say very good, or good and 7% say bad, very bad, or terrible. Among those saying they disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job, 11% say very good, or good and 87% say bad, very bad, or terrible.

When it comes to rating their household financial situations, 66% of Americans give an excellent, very good, or good rating and 30% give a bad, very bad, or terrible rating.

Household financial situation

Excellent

Very good

Good

Bad

Very bad

Terrible

Undecided

Apr 201612%18%36%19%6%5%4%
Mar 2016 11% 19% 33% 19% 7% 6% 5%
Feb 2016 11% 19% 35% 18% 7% 8% 2%
Jan 2016 10% 17% 35% 19% 7% 8% 4%
Dec 2015 8% 17% 41% 17% 7% 6% 4%
Nov 2015 10% 20% 39% 17% 7% 5% 2%
Oct 2015 8% 19% 49% 15% 4% 4% 1%
Sep 2015 8% 18% 51% 14% 5% 2% 2%
Aug 2015 5% 15% 55% 15% 4% 4% 2%
Jul 2015 12% 21% 44% 17% 2% 3% 1%
Jun 2015 14% 15% 44% 15% 5% 6% 1%
May 2015 17% 11% 39% 19% 8% 5% 1%
Apr 2015 9% 12% 51% 13% 11% 3% 1%

Among those saying they approve of the way Obama is handling his job, 90% say excellent, very good, or good and 10% say bad, very bad, or terrible. Among those saying they disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job, 42% say very good, or good and 53% say bad, very bad, or terrible.

A total of 17% of Americans say they think the financial situations in their households are getting better, 53% say staying the same, and 24% say getting worse.

Household financial situation

Getting better

Staying the same

Getting worse

Undecided

Apr 201617%53%24%6%
Mar 2016 13% 52% 28% 7%
Feb 2016 16% 50% 26% 8%
Jan 2016 17% 45% 30% 8%
Dec 2015 14% 50% 29% 7%
Nov 2015 15% 50% 28% 7%
Oct 2015 20% 51% 24% 5%
Sep 2015 19% 56% 22% 3%
Aug 2015 22% 53% 19% 6%
Jul 2015 14% 55% 30% 1%
Jun 2015 23% 47% 30% *
May 2015 30% 38% 30% 2%
Apr 2015 13% 49% 33% 5%

Among those saying they approve of the way Obama is handling his job, 31% say getting better, 597% say staying the same, and less than 7% say getting worse. Among those saying they disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job, less than 5% say getting better, 45% say staying the same, and 42% say getting worse.

Looking to a year from now, 28% of Americans say that they think their household financial situations will be better than today, 48% say the same as today, and 17% say worse than today.

Household financial situation a year from now

Better than today

The same as today

Worse than
today

Undecided

Apr 201628%48%17%7%
Mar 2016 21% 52% 19% 8%
Feb 2016 24% 51% 19% 6%
Jan 2016 23% 45% 25% 7%
Dec 2015 19% 45% 29% 7%
Nov 2015 21% 44% 28% 7%
Oct 2015 28% 41% 25% 6%
Sep 2015 28% 41% 25% 6%
Aug 2015 28% 38% 27% 7%
Jul 2015 28% 39% 28% 5%
Jun 2015 35% 35% 25% 5%
May 2015 30% 35% 33% 2%
Apr 2015 17% 47% 28% 8%

Among those saying they approve of the way Obama is handling his job, 39% say better than today, 52% say the same as today, and 5% say worse than today. Among those saying they disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job, 16% say better than today, 45% say the same as today, and 31% say worse than today.


About this Survey -

Survey Sponsor: American Research Group, Inc.

The American Research Group has been conducting national surveys of consumers since 1985.

Sample Size: 1,100 completed interviews among a random sample of all adults age 18 and older living in households in the continental United States (see methodology for details).

Sample Dates: April 17-20, 2016

Margin of Error: 3 percentage points, 95% of the time, on questions where opinion is evenly split.

Question Wording and Order:

Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as president?

Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling the economy?

How do you rate the condition of the national economy these days - would you say it is excellent, very good, good, bad, very bad, or terrible?

Do you think the national economy is getting better, staying the same, or getting worse?

Would you say that the national economy is in a recession, or not?

A year from now, do you expect the national economy to be better than it is today, the same as it is today, or worse than it is today?

How do you rate the condition of the financial situation in your household - would you say it is excellent, very good, good, bad, very bad, or terrible?

Do you think the financial situation in your household is getting better, staying the same, or getting worse?

A year from now, do you expect the financial situation in your household to be better than it is today, the same as it is today, or worse than it is today?

 

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