“People are not looking at these government reports to decide how the economy is doing, or how well they or their neighbors are doing. They know from their own daily experience,” Democratic pollster Mark Mellman said.

“The flow of economic news matters,” but only to supplement what their own eyes tell them, Mellman added…

To homeowners, the value of their house ranks high. With nearly half the nation’s adult population owning stocks and other securities, mostly through 401(k) and similar programs at work or in pension funds, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is paid some heed.