U.S. President Barack Obama greets supporters as he arrives with British PM David Cameron
U.S. President Barack Obama greets supporters REUTERS/Matt Sullivan

President Barack Obama's job approval ratings rose by 2 points to 50 percent in the latest Reuters/Ipsos poll. Obama's ratings have reached 50 percent for the first time since last July. The poll indicates that more number of Americans now believe that the President is doing his job well than those who think he is not.

The poll was taken during the period of March 8-11 and shows that 50 percent of the Americans approve of Obama as the President, while 48 percent are disapproving of his job.

The poll was conducted in the wake of reports that showed that around 227,000 jobs were added to the U.S. economy in the month of February. The poll results have brought cheer to the Obama camp, as previous poll reports by different pollsters had shown a decline in Obama's popularity because of the spiraling gasoline prices.

The economy is improving, not by leaps and bounds but people feel that things are getting better, said Ipsos pollster Cliff Young to the Reuters. The poll also found that more number of Americans believe that the country is going in the right direction.

According to the poll, 37 percent of the people said that they believe the country is headed in the right direction, depicting a 5-point increase from 32 percent in February, Reuters reported.

The slow but steady growth in economy has benefited Obama as it has raised optimism in Americans about job creation.

The Reuters/Ipsos poll also shows that the President is gaining over his Republican rivals. He leads Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney by 11 points in a duel and leads Santorum by 10 points in a one-to-one general election with him, while Gingrich trails by 17 points in a duel with Obama, according to the polls.

Obama has also benefitted from the prolonged Republican presidential nomination process and the bitter fight among the Republican presidential hopefuls. In the past month, Obama's campaign had successfully leveraged Republican sparring on conservative issues like abortion and contraception as an attack on women's rights, reported Reuters.

The Reuters/Ipsos telephone poll of 1,084 adults included 554 respondents who identified themselves as Democrats, 421 as Republicans and 109 as independents. The total respondents included 937 registered voters, according to the Reuters report.