Every week, CivicScience continually tracks current and anticipated consumer trends. Here are three key insights marketers should know this week:

1. Americans are optimistic about the nuclear fusion breakthrough. 

In recent news, scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory reached a nuclear fusion breakthrough: achieving net energy for the first time, which means they produced more energy than they initially used to start the reaction. Analysts have long been hopeful that nuclear fusion could be a source of unlimited energy that doesn’t harm the environment or contribute to global warming.

Recent CivicScience data show that about 1-in-2 U.S. adults say the breakthrough makes them more optimistic about our ability to combat climate change, with 1-in-5 saying they’re a lot more optimistic.

2. The majority of Americans support U.S. military aid to Ukraine, regardless of political party.

This month, Congress passed its annual defense budget, including billions of dollars of military aid to Ukraine. CivicScience data show that regardless of political party, more than half of Americans support military aid to Ukraine. However, Democrats (83%) are more likely to support this decision than Independents (66%) and Republicans (53%).

3. Americans remain concerned about rising utility prices as winter storms hit.

With a third of U.S. adults reporting they experienced storms or severe weather events last week, it may come as no surprise that strong concerns over gas and energy prices reached 45% last week, the highest percentage we’ve seen since October 2022.

Looking specifically at home utility prices, the majority of consumers expect utility prices to get worse over the next six months (59%, compared to 15% who think they’ll get better).

However, as we head into the new year, Americans are feeling increasingly optimistic about their personal financial health, particularly their incomes. Find out more in the full report, distributed weekly to clients. Book a demo to get started.