Americans Feeling Better About Their Job Hunt

Optimism about the labor market has returned to pre-recession levels, according to a new Gallup poll.

Employees wait to greet job seekers during a Kroger Co. Hiring Fair at one of the company's grocery stores in Lexington, Kentucky, U.S., on Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2014.

Employees wait to greet job seekers during a Kroger Co. Hiring Fair at one of the company's grocery stores in Lexington, Kentucky, U.S., on Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2014.

Photographer: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg'

Americans' employment outlook has returned to pre-Great Recession levels, with the highest number of people expressing a positive outlook about the job market since November 2007.

Thirty-six percent of respondents said now is a "good time" to find a "quality job" in December, up six percentage points from last month, according to a Gallup survey released on Monday.  While 61 percent of people believe it's a bad time to find a job, those numbers have also declined, from 66 percent in November and 73 percent in December 2013. 

Gallup has asked respondents the job question since 2001. The high-water mark for people believing it was a "good time" to find a good job was 48 percent in January 2007. The lowest was 8 percent, most recently in November 2011.

Gallup poll from Dec. 2014
Gallup poll from Dec. 2014

From Gallup: 

Americans' perceptions that now is a good time to find a quality job have returned to pre-recession levels, a sign that Americans are seeing improving job conditions. This follows a November increase in Gallup's Job Creation Index. That month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics' U.S. unemployment rate stayed just under 6%, at 5.8%. While these indicators are still not as good as what was seen prior to the start of the recession, they are much improved from 2009 to 2011, when the economy was still slowly recovering.

The Gallup survey follows a strong jobs report  earlier this month. The jobless rate held at a six-year low of 5.8 percent and earnings rose by the most since June of last year. The jump in wages as well as the biggest hiring surge in almost three years suggested the U.S. was putting aside doubts about the strength of its economic recovery, Bloomberg News reported.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal. LEARN MORE