MANCHESTER, N.H. — President Trump returned Thursday to the state that gave him his first presidential primary victory, looking to once again demonstrate his popularity with New Hampshire’s Republican voters.

The president made the quick trip to Southern New Hampshire University as he spends the week at his New Jersey golf club. The event gave Trump a chance to address the heightened fears about the U.S. economy, fueled by a development in the bond market that has predicted previous recessions. Avoiding an economic slump is critical to Trump’s reelection hopes.

“I think that we’re going to have a tremendous time,” Trump said in a call-in interview on the “New Hampshire Today” radio show Thursday. “It’s going to be a lot of fun.”

Trump talked up the U.S. economy while acknowledging nervousness among investors. Stock indexes in the early afternoon had clawed back some of their steep losses from the previous day.

“We had a couple of bad days, but we’re going to have some very good days ’cause we had to take on China,” Trump said.

New Hampshire, which Trump lost by about 2,700 votes in the 2016 general election, is doing well economically, at least when using broad measures. But beneath the top-line data are clear signs that the prosperity is being unevenly shared, and when the tumult of the Trump presidency is added to the mix, the state’s flinty voters may not be receptive to his appeals.

An August University of New Hampshire Survey Center poll found that 42% of New Hampshire adults approve of Trump while 53% disapprove. The poll also showed that 49% approve of Trump’s handling of the economy and 44% disapprove.

At 2.4%, New Hampshire’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for May was among the lowest in the nation. But wage growth is significantly below national gains. Average hourly earnings rose a scant 1.1% in New Hampshire in 2018, lagging the 3% gain nationwide, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In other ways, like the home ownership rate — first in the nation — and median household income — seventh in the U.S. — the state is thriving, according to census data.

New Hampshire’s four Electoral College votes are far below that of key swing states like Florida, Wisconsin and Michigan, but its influence can prove powerful in close election years like 2000, when George W. Bush’s victory in the state gave him the edge needed to win the White House.

Hunter Woodall and Kevin Freking are Associated Press writers.