UCI

2002 PPIC Statewide Survey: December 2002
Special Survey of Orange County
Public Policy Institute of California
in collaboration with the
University of California, Irvine

Press Release
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Appendices
2002 Survey
Survey Advisory Commitee

University of California, Irvine
© 2002 UC Regents

County Economy

Overall ratings of the Orange County economy are much less glowing than last year, although still in positive territory. Today, 58 percent of residents rate the Orange County economy as either excellent or good – a 16-point decline from last year and the least upbeat assessment since 1996. Still, ratings of the county’s economy are much more positive than they were between 1992 and 1996; and today, only 6 percent of Orange County residents think their economy is in poor shape.

Ratings of the county economy are more positive among residents with higher incomes. Those with incomes of $80,000 or more are more likely than those with incomes below $40,000 to say that the Orange County economy is excellent or good (70% to 49%). Nonetheless, nearly half of the residents in the less affluent groups also rate the county’s economy as excellent or good. Whites are more likely than Latinos (62% to 50%), and South County residents are more likely than North County residents (67% to 54%), to rate the county economy in positive terms.

One-quarter of the residents in Orange County think that their economy is in a serious to moderate recession, and another 12 percent say it is in a mild recession. About one in four adults in North County (28%) and South County (21%) and among Latinos (28%) and whites (25%) believe that the county is in a moderate to serious recession. Still, most residents (54%) do not think the county is experiencing this kind of economic trouble. The residents most likely to say that the county is in a serious to moderate recession are those with only a high-school diploma (29%) and those with incomes below $40,000 (31%). However, county residents appear less negative than residents of the state as a whole. For example, in the November 2002 Statewide Survey, nearly 40 percent of Californians thought their region was in a serious to moderate recession.

"In general, how would you rate the economy in Orange County today?"

 

All Adults

 

1992

1993

1994

1995

1996

1997

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

Excellent / Good

19%

20%

28%

19%

44%

63%

76%

78%

79%

74%

58%

Fair

52

49

54

50

45

32

20

19

17

21

34

Poor

28

30

17

30

10

4

3

2

2

4

6

Don't know

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

2

1

2

Source for Orange County from 1992 to 2000 is the Orange County Annual Survey at UCI by Mark Baldassare and Cheryl Katz

"Would you say that [your region / Orange County] is in an economic recession or not?" (If yes: "Do you think it is in a serious, moderate, or mild recession?")

All
California

Region

SF Bay Area

Los Angeles

Orange County

Yes, serious recession

13%

26%

11%

5%

Yes, moderate recession

23

25

26

20

Yes, mild recession

11

13

10

12

No

49

34

49

54

Don’t know

4

2

4

9