President Obama said on Thursday that he's "confident" the U.S. won't slip into a so-called "double dip" recession.

The president, fresh off a trip to a Ford plant in Chicago to tout manufacturing successes, said that while a great deal of work remains to be done, he was strongly optimistic that the economy wouldn't slide back into a second recession.

"I am confident about that," the president said in an interview on CNBC when asked if thought the U.S. would avoid a double-dip recession.

"I think that we've got a lot of work to do," he added. "There are some trends that we've got to address, particularly in terms of long-term unemployment, and you addressed this earlier."

A slowed rate in gross domestic product for the second quarter, combined with a monthly jobless figure that could be tough for the administration, has put the White House in a bit of a defensive stance on its economic record.

The administration has come under criticism from Republicans, who argue that Obama's signature $787 billion stimulus package did little to help the economy while opening a gap in the deficit.

Obama hit the road Thursday and throughout the past two weeks to help sell the successes of his economic policies, specifically pointing to recovery within the auto industry. The administration last year extended assistance to GM and Chrysler as those companies underwent bankruptcy and restructuring. After visiting those companies' plants last week in Detroit, Obama trumpeted the work at Ford, the only U.S. automaker to avoid a bailout.

"What you're see in the auto industry is what you see in American manufacturing generally, which is that, first of all, we were losing 300,000, 400,000 jobs the year before I took office. We've now gained 55,000 back," Obama said. "That means we're moving in the right direction."