Northern Economics, Inc. Launches the Alaska Confidence Review
Northern Economics, Inc. has launched a new project to measure Alaskans’ confidence in the state’s economy and their personal finances—the Alaska Confidence Review.
Over the coming years on a quarterly basis, Northern Economics will release the Alaska Confidence Review, a survey-based index that tracks Alaskans’ confidence in, and expectations for, the state’s economy as well as their own personal finances. This endeavor fills an important niche in the information available to state officials, lawmakers, business owners, and the public by providing a scientific and statistically valid measure of public confidence in Alaska’s economy. The first survey was conducted last month. Some of the more interesting results include:
· A majority of Alaskans would not describe their local community’s economy as good or improving:
o Fewer than 40 percent of respondents rated their local community’s economy as good or better, while just under 15 percent rated local economic conditions as poor or worse.
o Two-thirds of respondents said they felt the economy in their local communities was staying the same—getting neither worse nor better. The remainder split equally between those who felt things were getting better and those who felt things were getting worse.
· A majority of Alaskans would not describe the overall state economy as good or improving:
o Only 32 percent of respondents rated Alaska’s economy as good or better, while just over 16 percent rated the economy as poor or worse.
o Two-thirds of respondents said they felt the Alaska economy was staying the same—getting neither worse nor better. The remaining respondents leaned slightly towards an improving state economy.
· At the same time, Alaskans feel comparatively good about their personal finances:
o More than 60 percent of respondents rated their family’s financial situation as secure or very secure. Respondents who felt their family’s financial situation is getting better outnumbered those who felt it is getting worse by more than a two-to-one margin.
· Long-term Alaska residents (those with more than 30 years in the state) are slightly less confident in their local community’s economy, the state’s economy, and their own personal finances than residents with less time in-state
· Urban areas feel more confident in their local economies than rural communities, but there are very few regional differences in the overall assessment of the state’s economy.The data supporting the Alaska Confidence Review are generated via The Alaska Survey, a joint venture between Ivan Moore Research and Northwest Strategies. This quarterly statewide survey of more than 750 Alaskans is the first regularly conducted survey in Alaska to include a substantial sub-sample of respondents who only use cell phones.