With the Economist magazine recently heralding on its cover that Britain was “sailing out of the storm”, we thought we would check how our long-running wellbeing monitor compared to such optimistic unemployment, industrial production, and economic growth (or slow-down of contraction) figures.

For our long running wellbeing monitor a score of between 21% and 26% is seen as the goldilocks zone for the proportion of the population who are better off now compared to 6 months ago; since the 2008 financial crisis (which saw this proportion fall to 14%) this figure was only briefly maintained between the middle two quarters of 2010 (averaging 22% for this period).

At the start of 2011 we recorded a much higher wellbeing figure than the same month in 2012 (18% for 2011, 15% for 2012), yet the figures for September are almost the reverse with September 2012 having 20% feeling better off compared to 16% in 2011. This increase in wellbeing over the nine month period in 2012 is encouraging in itself, but when compared to the decline we recorded in for the same period in 2011 it is even better.

To further enhance this increase in wellbeing recorded in 2012, the figures for respondents’ outlook over the next 6 months are even more encouraging. Seven out of the nine months between January and September recorded figures in 2012 higher than the corresponding 2011 figures, for the proportion who expect to be better off in 6 months’ time compared to when surveyed.

Economic forecasts are predicting the second half of 2012 will be better than the first half, and that 2012 will be better than 2011, and furthermore that 2013 will be even better than this year. It would seem that such optimism is not misplaced based on correlation between economic figures and our wellbeing monitor; yet the need to maintain and build upon this positive outlook has never been more important to such a delicate economy.