Diana Carter of the Democrat and Chronicle writes: A Siena College survey showed consumer confidence here is the highest in the state, and a financial news website labeled Rochester as one of 10 cities "poised for greatness in 2012."
TheStreet.com, a widely followed site, mentioned the region's job growth and stable real estate market.
"Sure, there are cold winters, lake-effect snow and a sky that turns gray in October and usually stays that way until April," wrote Jason Notte, a Boston-based writer. "But the city that's been shrinking since the 1960s feels downright cozy in the treat-stocked aisles of a Wegmans supermarket, over a cheeseburger-and-mac-salad garbage plate at Nick Tahou's or with a Genny Cream Ale and a rack of ribs at Dinosaur Barbecue.
"It's shockingly stable, and that's about the best any city can ask for in 2012."
Other cities on the list, all more populous than Rochester, include Chicago, Houston, Tampa, San Jose, Charlotte, Indianapolis, Austin, New Orleans and one international giant, London, which hosts the Summer Olympics this year.
In the Siena Research Institute survey, Rochester led the state in overall consumer confidence with an index reading of 70.7, the highest for this metropolitan area since the financial crisis in late 2008. The Flower City also topped the charts for current and future confidence.
The poll measures consumer intentions to spend, particularly on large-ticket items such as homes, cars, appliances and furniture.
“Rochester, despite Kodak’s out-of-focus picture, is more confident than any other area of the state, and along with Buffalo and Albany, the only areas in which confidence is greater today than it was this time last year,” according to Don Levy, SRI’s director.
Despite numbers being on the rise generally, nowhere are consumers “truly upbeat,” Levy noted. “More accurately, the new year opens on a less pessimistic note.”
The news follows the Rochester Business Alliance’s release on Monday of a business confidence poll showing a more upbeat — or at least cautiously optimistic — feeling about the year ahead