More Americans optimistic about finding a job, most since Great Recession

According to a new Gallup poll released today, 36 percent of Americans think that now is a good time to find a quality job. That’s the highest percentage since November 2007, before the start of the “Great Recession.” Gallup’s analysis suggests that these numbers are “a sign that Americans are seeing improving labor conditions.”

Last month, only 30 percent of respondents felt as confident about the job market. A positive outlook on employment prospects has been slowly improving since late 2011, when only 8 percent of those polled felt optimistic about their opportunities. Since Gallup began asking this question in August 2001, the highest percentage of those who felt it was a good time to find a job was 48 percent in January 2007.

Gallup found that younger Americans (18-49) were more optimistic about their job prospects — 43 percent thought this was a good time to find a job, versus 29 percent of older Americans (50+) who thought the same. Democrats and those who lean Democratic were also more hopeful (47 percent) than Republicans and those who lean Republican (29 percent).

Despite confidence in the job market being at the highest levels since before the recession, 61 percent of those polled still believe that now is a bad time to find a job.

These new numbers are preceded by a positive jobs report last month, which showed a jobless rate of 5.8 percent, an increase in jobs added by private employers and more people working full-time rather than part-time.

The poll was conducted Dec. 8-11, 2014, from a random sample of 805 adults who were 18 or older, living in all 50 states and D.C.

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