Texans view state’s economic growth as a good thing but feel pinch of higher prices — CBS News poll

Texans rate their state’s economy better than Americans rate the nation’s overall, and they’re mostly optimistic about Texas’ — much more so than they are about the national economy. 

Texans view the economic growth of their state in a positive light — two out of three Texans say new business moving into Texas and increased building, growth and development in the state are making Texas better. 

But not all is rosy in the Lone Star state. Their views of the state’s economy are only mixed — they’re just better compared against the nation’s very low marks. And many Texans are not just concerned about inflation and gas prices, higher prices are leading to cutbacks in spending and reported difficulties, especially for those with lower incomes, just as with Americans overall.

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Most Texans are optimistic about their family’s financial situation, but there are clear worries about the impact of inflation; Texans are not spared that. They’re pessimistic about the cost of goods and services. For most, higher prices have impacted their lives, and the price of gas, in particular, has been a difficulty, and lower income Texans say they’re being affected in disproportionate numbers.

Optimism is tempered by concerns about inflation, and particularly the cost of gas.

Gas prices and inflation top of a list of important issues, just ahead of the economy overall, and above gun policy and education. So while most Texans are optimistic about their family’s finances, a large majority are pessimistic about the cost of goods and services specifically.

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Gas prices have had a particularly broad impact. Two-thirds of Texans say the higher gas prices Texans are facing have been a financial difficulty, including three in 10 who describe it as a financial hardship.

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Most Texans are feeling the pinch personally — seven out of 10 are cutting back on entertainment or other activities and cutting back on trips and travel. Most have also felt the effect when it comes to day-to-day activities — 57% are cutting back on food and grocery items as a result of higher prices, and 68% say they are driving less.

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Some Texans are faring worse. Half say they have had to use their savings to pay bills, and a third say they have missed some bill payments altogether.

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Lower-income Texans have felt the impact day-to-day the most. Two-thirds making under $50,000 a year have had to cut back on food and groceries, and about half have had to dip into savings to pay bills. This group is also more likely than higher-income families to have missed bill payments.

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This CBS News/YouGov survey was conducted with a statewide representative sample of 1,075 U.S. adult residents  in Texas interviewed between June 22-27, 2022. The sample was weighted to be representative of adults statewide according to gender, age, race, education, and geographic region based on the U.S. Census Current Population Survey, as well as to 2020 presidential vote. The margin of error is ±4.7 points for the total sample.

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