Gallup said U.S. satisfaction levels were at or above 30 percent since September and the historical average satisfaction rating since 1979 was 38 percent. Since May 2007, the percentage satisfied with the direction of the country reached 30 percent or better in only seven months -- from May through early August 2009 and in each of the last three months, from September through November.
The all-time high was 71 percent in February 1999, and the all-time low was 7 percent in October 2008, Gallup said.
Democrats were more optimistic than pessimistic about the state of the country, with 51 percent satisfied and 46 percent dissatisfied, while only 9 percent of Republicans were satisfied while 91 percent were dissatisfied. Sixty-nine percent of independents said they were dissatisfied and 29 percent satisfied.
U.S. adults surveyed rated the economy in general as the most important problem, followed by unemployment, dissatisfaction with government and the federal budget deficit. Healthcare was the only other specific issue mentioned by at least 5 percent of Americans.
The telephone poll of 1,015 adults was conducted Nov. 15-18. It has a margin of error of 4 percentage points.