Connecticut's state budget stalemate has residents growing increasingly concerned about the economy and their personal finances.

The latest quarterly InformCT Consumer Confidence Survey shows 56% of residents don't believe the state's economy is improving, up from 44% in the first quarter.

Consumer confidenceJust 21% felt economic conditions were improving—down from 29% last quarter—while 23% were neutral or unsure (27%).

The independent, nonpartisan research policy institute said the latest quarterly results showed the highest share of negative responses about the economy since the survey began in 2015.

Less than a third (30%) of surveyed residents said their personal financial situation improved in the last six months, 29% were worse off, and 41% said their finances were unchanged.

Consumer Spending

Those findings were reflected in consumer spending plans, with only 32% likely to make a major purchase in the next six months—compared with 46% last quarter.

More than two-thirds (69%) said the budget stalemate will impact their personal budgets, up from 56% in the first quarter.

InformCT said, "It is possible the uncertainty of the state's budget situation may be contributing to the decreased likelihood of purchasing."

58% say lawmakers should cut government spending to resolve the state's $5.1 billion deficit.
Residents also weighed in on the budget debate, with 58% saying lawmakers should cut government spending to resolve the state's projected two-year, $5.1 billion deficit.

Only 15% thought lawmakers should hike business taxes.

Business Climate

Pessimism about the state's business climate also grew, with 35% of residents believing business conditions were worse now than six months ago, up from 27% in the first quarter.

Forty-three percent said business conditions were unchanged, down from 50% last quarter, and 22% said they were better (23%).

One-third of respondents predicted overall business conditions would worsen in the next six months, compared with 25% last quarter, while 23% said conditions would improve (30%).

The survey did show improved perceptions about the state's job market, with a nine-point decline from a year ago in those believing jobs were very hard to find—24% versus 33%.

Fifteen percent said there were plenty of jobs now compared with six months ago, up four points from last year.

There was also a slight decline in those concerned about employment security, with 36% feeling their job was in jeopardy, down from 39% last year in the second quarter last year.