Economic insecurity: Americans' concerns about their jobs, personal finances, retirement, health costs, housing, and more


Article Highlights

  • Recent polls show Americans' anxieties about the economy appear to be easing post-recession @AEIPol

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  • 58% of Americans are completely satisfied with their job security acc. to Aug. 2014 Gallup data @AEIPol

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  • Approx. 60% think their financial situations will improve in the next 12 months @AEIPol

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As we approach Labor Day weekend, we’ve assembled recent polls and historical trends on economic insecurity in America. In a related study, we look beyond concerns about economic insecurity to assess how workers feel about their jobs, benefits, coworkers, and the quality of their work life. Both studies show improvement in Americans’ attitudes since the 2008 crash, although many Americans do not believe the economy has turned the corner yet.

•    Like your job?: You’re not alone. In every Gallup survey since 2001, 40 percent or more have been completely satisfied with the work they do. In August 2013, 85 percent of employed people said they were completely or somewhat satisfied with the work they do (Gallup).

•    Worried about losing it?: The percentage of people who worry about being laid off has returned to near pre-recession levels. Nineteen percent told Gallup this month they were worried about being laid off. In August 2007 at this trend’s lowest point, 14 percent expressed the same concern.

•    Easing anxiety: The substantial anxieties Americans felt about employment after the 2008 crash appear to have eased somewhat. Gallup’s August 2014 data reports that 58 percent are completely satisfied with their job security, an increase of 10 percentage points since 2012.

•    Cautious optimism: In January and April 2014 Pew questions, around six in 10 said their financial situation would improve in the next 12 months. Roughly a quarter said it would get worse.

Economic insecurity: Americans' concerns about their jobs, personal finances, retirement, health costs, hou... by American Enterprise Institute


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