How much power do Americans think the president has on the economy?

Jamie BallardData Journalist
September 13, 2020, 12:00 PM UTC

President Donald Trump has often touted the healthy economy as a marker of his success as president. During his speech at the Republican National Convention last month, he said, “In the new term as president, we will again build the greatest economy in history, quickly returning to full employment, soaring incomes and record prosperity.” 

But do Americans think the president has much influence over the country’s economic success?  
 
The latest poll from The Economist and YouGov finds that just under half (47%) of Americans think that improving the economy is something that the president can do a lot about. An additional 36 percent think the economy is something the president can do a little about, while 17 percent of Americans believe that improving the economy is something that is mostly beyond the president’s control.  

Biden supporters (54%) are more likely than Trump supporters (46%) to believe that the economy is something that the president can do a lot about.  

Trump’s approval rating on the economy is 46 percent in the latest Economist/YouGov poll. A similar number (43%) disapprove of how Trump is handling jobs and the economy.  

See full topline and table results from this week’s Economist/YouGov survey.  

Methodology: The Economist survey was conducted by YouGov using a nationally representative sample of 1,500 U.S. adult citizens interviewed online between September 6 - 8, 2020. This sample was weighted according to gender, age, race, and education based on the American Community Survey, conducted by the US Bureau of the Census, as well as 2016 Presidential vote, registration status, geographic region, and news interest. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of all US citizens. The margin of error is approximately 3.4% for the overall sample.