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WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
WPA's Weekly Political Brief
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WPA's Weekly Political Brief

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  1. WPA’s Weekly Political Brief September 7, 2012 Page 1
  2. WPA’s Weekly Political BriefAs part of our continuing effort to keep our clients and friends up-to-date on the political environmentas we head toward Election Day, 2012, we’ll be distributing these weekly data updates every Friday.In each update you can expect to find the following key indicators tracked: • Direction of the Country • Obama Job Approval • National Unemployment • Obama Approval on the Economy • Generic Congressional Ballot • National & per capita debt • Romney vs. ObamaIn addition, each week we’ll feature a few charts showing what we think is the most interesting andtimely new data from that week. This week we have: • The decline in the Labor Force Participation Rate. • A look at the types of jobs created during the Obama Presidency. • President Obama’s overall favorability compared to other incumbent Presidents prior to their convention. • The World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Index, including a look at how and why the United States has fallen from first to seventh since 2009. Page 2
  3. Weekly Summary• Only 96,000 jobs were created in August (pg. 9). o The labor market and the overall economy continue to underperform what is needed to achieve real economic recovery. o Since the beginning of 2012, job growth average 139,000 jobs per month vs. an average of 153,00 jobs per month in 2011.• The labor force declined by 367,000 workers and the participation rate fell to its lowest level since September 1981 (pg. 10) o If the labor force participation rate was the same as when Obama took office, the unemployment rate would be 11.2%.• According the National Employment Law Project, a majority of jobs lost in the last four years were mid-wage jobs, but a majority of jobs created are low wage jobs (pg. 11). o While 60% of jobs lost were from the middle class, 58% of new jobs created are low wage occupations. o This has caused a growing lower class of underemployed Americans.• President Obama has a much lower favorability than previous recent incumbent Presidents heading into the convention (pg. 13). o Obama’s favorability is at 47%, 7% lower than the nearest incumbent (Bush, 2004).• The World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Index was released this week with the United States ranked 7th (pg. 14-15). o The United States’ ranking has dropped every year since Obama has taken office. o Economists blame government bureaucracy and taxes among their primary concerns for doing business in the United States. Page 3
  4. The number of Americans who believe the nation is headed in the wrong direction is steadily climbing going into September. Direction of the Country100%90% 77% 74%80% 66% 64% 66% 64%70% 62% 63% 64% 61% 62% 63% 64%60% 47%50% 2010 Election40% 31% 31% 30% 31% 29% 27% 29% 28% 27% 30% 31% 30%30% 17% 19%20%10% 0% Aug-10 Aug-11 Aug-12 Apr-10 Apr-11 Jun-10 Jun-11 Apr-12 Jun-12 Jan-10 May-10 Jul-10 Sep-10 Jan-11 May-11 Jul-11 Sep-11 Jan-12 May-12 Jul-12 Sep-12 Feb-10 Oct-10 Nov-10 Dec-10 Feb-11 Oct-11 Mar-11 Nov-11 Dec-11 Feb-12 Mar-10 Mar-12 Right Direction Wrong Track One Month Ago One Year Ago Right Direction 31% 19% Wrong Track 63% 75% Source: Real Clear Politics Page 4
  5. More Americans disapprove of Obama’s presidency than those who approve with less than two months until Election Day. Obama Job Approval100%90%80%70%60% 49% 52% 51% 52% 51% 50% 48% 48% 49% 48% 48% 49% 50% 49% 49%50%40% 46% 47% 47% 47% 46% 48% 42% 44% 43% 44% 44% 46% 46% 47% 48%30%20%10% 0% Approve Disapprove One Week Ago One Month Ago Approve 47% 48% Disapprove 49% 49% Source: Real Clear Politics Page 5
  6. The national debt passed $16 trillion earlier this week. $16,005,146, 541,387 U.S. National Debt $140,027 Debt Per Taxpayer$50,921 Debt Per Citizen Source: USDebtclock.org Page 6
  7. The Generic Congressional Ballot is tied at 44% for both Democrats and Republicans heading into the middle of September.100% Generic Congressional Ballot Previous Election Day Generic Ballots90% 100% R+7 seats D+37 seats D+29 seats R+69 seats 49% 47% 54% 53% 52% 45%80% 46% 43% 50%70% 0%60% 2004 2006 2008 201050% 46% 45% 46% 43% 44% 42% 43% 44% 41% 43% 43% 44% 44%40% 45% 44% 43% 41% 42% 43% 42% 43% 41% 41% 42% 44% 41%30%20%10% 0% Democrat Republican Source: Real Clear Politics Seat change includes Congressional and Senate gains Page 7
  8. Fewer than 40% of Americans approve of the President’s handling of the economy. Obama Economic Approval100.0% 90.0% 80.0% 70.0% 60.0% 53% 2010 Election 50.0% 40.0% 39% 30.0% 20.0% 10.0% 0.0% Approve Disapprove Source: Pollster.com Page 8
  9. Only 96,000 jobs were created in August. The labor market and the overall economy continue to underperform what is needed to achieve real economic recovery. Since the beginning of 2012, job growth averaged 139,000 jobs per month vs. an average of 153,000 jobs per month in 2011. Jobs Created by Month200,000 125,000 =150,000 141,000 Number of new jobs needed to keep pace with100,000 96,000 population growth 45,000 50,000 0 June July August National Unemployment Rate12.0%10.0% 8.0% August 2012 6.0% 8.1% 4.0% 2.0% 0.0% Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics Page 9
  10. The labor force declined by 367,000 workers and the labor force participation rate fell to its lowest level since September 1981. If the labor force participation rate was the same as when Obama took office, the unemployment rate would be 11.2%. US Labor Force Participation Rate686664 August 201262 63.5%6058565452 May-64 May-71 May-78 May-85 May-92 Jan-97 May-99 May-06 Jan-62 Mar-63 Jan-69 Mar-70 Jul-72 Jan-76 Mar-77 Jan-83 Mar-84 Jan-90 Mar-91 Mar-98 Jan-04 Mar-05 Nov-09 Jan-11 Mar-12 Jul-65 Sep-66 Nov-67 Sep-73 Nov-74 Jul-79 Sep-80 Nov-81 Jul-86 Sep-87 Nov-88 Jul-93 Sep-94 Nov-95 Jul-00 Sep-01 Nov-02 Jul-07 Sep-08 Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics Page 10
  11. According to the National Employment Law Project, an analysis of jobs lost and jobs created over the past four years shows that a majority of those lost were mid-wage jobs and a majority of those created were low wage jobs. This has contributed to the shrinking middle class and exemplifies the number of Americans who are underemployed in the current economy. Types of Jobs Lost and Types of Jobs Created From 2008-2012100%90%80%70% Percent of Jobs Lost 60%60% 58%50% Percent of New40% Jobs Created30% 22% 21% 19% 20%20%10% 0% High Wage Jobs Mid-Wage Jobs Low Wage Jobs Page 11
  12. The Presidential race is tied at 47% in the first week of September. Obama vs. Romney100%90%80%70%60%50% 47% 49% 49% 49% 47% 49% 47% 46% 46% 45% 47% 47% 46% 47% 47% 47% 47%40% 46% 43% 45% 44% 43% 45% 44% 45% 46% 47% 43% 45% 44% 44% 45% 45% 44%30%20%10% 0% Obama Romney Source: Real Clear Politics Page 12
  13. Among the four most recent incumbent Presidents seeking reelection, President Obama has the worst overall favorability heading into his parties’ national convention. Not only is his favorability the lowest, but he is the only incumbent whose favorability is lower than 50%. Overall Favorability of Incumbent Presidents Heading into the Convention100%90%80% 43% 40% 39% 49%70%60% 4% 4% 3%50% 4% Unfavorable Undecided40% Favorable30% 54% 56% 57% 47%20%10% 0% Barack Obama George W. Bush Bill Clinton George H.W. Bush 2012 2004 1996 1992 Page 13
  14. The World Economic Forum released the 2012-2013 Global Competitive Index, ranking nations based on their ability to foster economic growth. The United States has steadily fallen from first to seventh during the Obama Presidency, while other similarly ranked nations have either remained the same or risen. GCI Rank Changes During Obamas Presidency 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 7 6 7 7 7 7 8 8 102008-2009 2009-2010 2010-2011 2011-2012 2012-2013 Switzerland Singapore Sweden Netherlands Germany Finland United States Page 14
  15. The World Economic Forum economists were asked why doing business is problematic in the United States. The most common reasons were Government Bureaucracy, Tax Rates, and Tax Regulations. Most Problematic Factors for Doing Business in U.S. Inefficient Government Bureaucracy 15% Tax Rates 14% Tax Regulations 11% Acess to Financing 10% Restrictive Labor Regulations 7% Inflation 7% Inadequately educated workforce 7% Policy instability 7%Poor work ethic in national labor force 6% Insufficient capacity to innovate 4% Inadequate supply of infrastructure 3% Foreign currency regulations 3% Government instability/coups 3% Corruption 2% Crime and theft 1% Poor public health 1% 0% 2% 4% 6% 8% 10% 12% 14% 16% 18% 20% Page 15
  16. For additional information about this or any other of our services, please feel free to contact: Bryon Allen Chris Wilson Chris Perkins Partner and COO Partner and CEO Partner 202.470.6300 405.286.6500 202.494.3084 E-mail: E-mail: E-mail:BAllen@WPAResearch.com CWilson@WPAResearch.com CPerkins@WPAResearch.com Ryan Steusloff Matt Gammon Vice President Vice President 202.470.6300 202.470.6300 rsteusloff@WPAResearch.com mgammon@WPAResearch.com Page 16

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