Home Sweet Home. Still.
The five-year swoon in home prices has done little to shake the confidence of the American public in the investment value of homeownership. A new survey finds that fully eight-in-ten (81%) adults agree that buying a home is the best long-term investment a person can make although there has been some falloff in the intensity of the public’s faith.
Obama Ratings Slip Amid Economic Anxieties
About as many now approve (47%) as disapprove (45%) of the way Obama is handling his job with the president getting especially negative ratings on his handling of the budget deficit and the overall economy. The GOP has an advantage on the budget, while Democrats are favored on traits such as concern for average people, willingness to work with the opposition, and ethics. The parties run about even on jobs and health care.
The Future of the Global Muslim Population
The world’s Muslim population is expected to increase by about 35% in the next 20 years, rising from 1.6 billion in 2010 to 2.2 billion by 2030, according to new population projections by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life. Globally, the Muslim population is forecast to grow at about twice the rate of the non-Muslim population over the next two decades.
Baby Boomers Approach Age 65 — Glumly
Perched on the front stoop of old age, Baby Boomers are more downbeat than other age groups about the trajectory of their own lives and about the direction of the nation as a whole.
For the Public, a Tough Year Ends on a Down Note
Consistent with the mood of the nation all year, 2010 is closing on a down note — but not as low as in December 2008. Fully 72% are dissatisfied with national conditions, 89% rate national economic conditions as only fair or poor, and majorities or pluralities think the country is losing ground on nine of 12 major issues.
The Rise of College Student Borrowing
Graduates who received a bachelor’s degree in 2008 borrowed 50% more (in inflation-adjusted dollars) than their counterparts who graduated in 1996.
After the Great Recession: Foreign Born Gain Jobs; Native Born Lose Jobs
Immigrants are gaining jobs at a time when native-born workers continue to sustain losses. Foreign-born workers job gains may be the result of greater flexibility with regard to wages and hours of work or greater mobility. But despite rising employment, immigrants have experienced a sharp decline in earnings as well as a still substantial net loss in jobs.
The Reversal of the College Marriage Gap
In a reversal of long-standing marital patterns, college-educated young adults are now slightly more likely than young adults lacking a bachelor’s degree to have married by the age of 30.
One Recession, Two Americas
For a narrow majority of Americans (55%), the Great Recession brought a mix of unemployment, missed mortgage or rent payments, shrinking paychecks and shattered household budgets. But for the other 45%, the recession was largely free of such difficulties.
Nearly six-in-ten Americans say it is “unacceptable” for homeowners to stop making their mortgage payments, but more than a third say the practice of “walking away” from a home mortgage is acceptable under certain circumstances. Homeowners whose home values declined during the recession and those who have spent time unemployed are more likely to say that “walking away” from a mortgage is acceptable.