More Than Half (54%) Just Hope To Hang On Financially

Looking Ahead One Year: The Overall Economy And Personal Finances

(WASHINGTON, D.C. September 24)--"It is extremely rare, almost unheard of, to find more people thinking the overall economy will get better than think their own personal finances will improve in the next year. Yet that is what we find today in the U.S.," reports Riehle. "Most Americans are self-confident enough to believe they will succeed financially, even if others do not. It is a measure of the concern and confusion people feel about the financial road ahead to find more people optimistic about the economy than about their own pocketbook."

  • This is a rare moment when more Americans say the economy will improve (53%) than say their personal finances will improve (46%) in the next year. The proportion of Americans who feel the economy will improve in the next year has jumped, from 21% in March to a majority of 53% today. The proportion who feel their personal economic situation will improve in the next year has declined from 54% in March to 46% today.
  • Today, 45% think their personal financial situation will be unchanged in a year and 9% think it will get worse, adding up to a majority of 54% who feel they have topped out for now when it comes to personal financial growth, and who are just hoping to hang on to what they've got now for another year.
  • Most Americans still believe their children will be better off than they are, although there has been some minor decline in optimism for younger generations over the past two years.

Between Friday, September 21 and Sunday, September 23, 2001, Ipsos-Reid Express interviewed a representative sample of 1000 adults nationwide by telephone. Results are accurate within a margin of error of 3.1%.

Contact: Thomas Riehle (Tel.) 202-463-7300

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