NEW YORK ( Daily Finance) -- Consumers who live in the District of Columbia have more economic confidence than residents of any other part of the country, according to a new Gallup poll. Maryland and Virginia also rank in the top 10 for consumer confidence. One reason could be that government employment is still relatively strong near the nation's capitol -- at least for now, Gallup says. That could change as federal austerity makes its way through the system. Overall, U.S. economic confidence has fallen. In the first half of the year, Gallup's Economic Confidence Index averaged -28 nationwide, falling slightly from the first six months of 2011, when the index averaged -26. The score reflects "Americans' pessimistic views of the current and future U.S. economy," according to the polling firm, which characterized the change in the index as essentially flat from last year.
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