Survey Finds Montanans Positive About Economy

By Beacon Staff

MISSOULA — Economists at the University of Montana say a recent poll shows residents of the Treasure State are more upbeat about the economy than folks elsewhere in the country.

Patrick Barkey, director of UM’s Bureau of Business and Economic Research, says Montana’s Index of Consumer Sentiment was 106.6 in December, which is up from 100.8 in December 2010.

A University of Michigan poll, using the same questions, found the nationwide index was 69.9 in December, down from 70.6 in December 2010.

The index is benchmarked to a baseline of 100, and is based on a series of questions that ask people to evaluate their own economic status, the direction of the state economy and the climate for buying durable goods.

BBER’s research department polled 414 adults from Dec. 8 to Jan. 5.