November 26, 2013

Anxious about the economy, more Americans worry about their jobs


About six-in-ten Americans worry that they will lose their jobs due to the current state of the economy.

As the recovery from the Great Recession proceeds at an uneven pace for many Americans, a Washington Post-Miller Center poll taking the public’s pulse on the economy finds a high degree of anxiety among many about being able to get ahead financially, the difficulty of finding good jobs and, for those that are employed, concern about losing them.

(Credit: Washington Post-Miller Center poll)

About six-in-ten (62%) of those surveyed said they worried a lot or a little about losing their job because of the economy, with 32% saying they worried a lot. The joint Post-Miller Center poll said this figure surpassed the level of concern about losing jobs registered in more than a dozen surveys dating to the 1970s. The poll was conducted in September.

The survey noted that 54% of workers earning $35,000 or less worried a lot about losing their jobs compared to 37% who had that concern in 1992.

About three-quarters (74%) said finding good jobs had become harder.

Nearly half (48%) in the poll said they felt less financially secure as they did a few years ago, compared with 23% who felt more secure and 29% who described their circumstances as about the same.

While more than half (54%) considered their current standard of living to be better than that of their parents at the same age, a smaller number —39% —believed their children’s standard of living would be better than theirs at the same age.

The lingering effects of the Great Recession had also been captured in a Pew Research Center poll conducted in September. More than half (54%) of those surveyed said their household incomes had hardly recovered and 52% said the same about the job situation.

Category: Daily Number

Topics: Income Inequality, Work and Employment, Economics and Personal Finances

  1. Photo of Bruce Drake

    is a senior editor at Pew Research Center.