The latest National Poll from Bloomberg found that after the worst recession since the Great Depression, Americans are pessimistic about the prospects for their retirement.
According to Bloomberg, three in five respondents say their economic condition has improved recently or are confident it will get better. One in three say things have gotten worse or aren’t likely to improve anytime soon.
“I see some hope, but not a lot,” says poll respondent Brian Ridlon, 34, an out-of-work resident of Green Mountain, Arkansas, who wants to learn how to become a barber. “There are some avenues to improve yourself, but we need more.”
What optimism there is about the immediate future doesn’t carry over to the longer term. Pluralities of those polled say they’re not hopeful they will have enough money in retirement and expect they will have to keep working to make up the difference. More than 50 percent aren’t confident or are just somewhat confident their children will have better lives than they have.
“I don’t think they’ve got a chance,” says Brian Rich, a 65-year-old retiree with three children in their 20s who lives in Gloucester, Massachusetts. “I’m very angry at what’s going on in this country. Change is being forced upon us.”
A year after the official end of the recession, economic growth has slowed, slipping to a 1.7 percent annual pace in the second quarter from 3.7 percent in the first and 5 percent in the final three months of 2009. Unemployment stood at 9.6 percent in September, down from a 26-year high of 10.1 percent in October 2009 while still above the 5 percent rate that prevailed at the start of the recession almost three years ago.
Americans are responding to the tough times by conserving cash and making do with less over the past couple of years, according to the poll.