Country Financial: Most Americans Expect a Recession, But Only Half are Prepared

Nine in 10 Americans believe that a recession is looming. And in one in four Americans are living from pay to paycheck, according to a new survey  

Country Financial, Bloomington, Ill., published this finding in a summary of results from a new survey on recession preparedness. The report is based on a national telephone survey of 3,000 Americans and is compiled by Rasmussen Reports, LLC, an independent research firm.

Nearly nine-in-ten (87%) of the survey respondents say that a double-dip recession is likely in the next two years. Yet, only half (51%) are prepared to handle it financially.

A quarter of the adults polled have no savings to rely on. For those with savings, 55% used that safety net during the recession. And 62% say it will take at least a year to rebuild their reserves, the survey says.

One-third (32%) of respondents say that rising food and gas prices threaten their savings plans. Americans of all ages cited this as their biggest savings obstacle. Another 18% point to job loss or a pay cut as a key barrier.

Among the survey’s other findings:

● Fifty-eight percent of those closest to retirement (ages 50 to 64) had to rely on savings to get through the recession. Of those, 34% say it will take them two years or more to rebuild.

●  College loan debt and a high unemployment rate may be impacting “Gen Y.” Twenty percent say too much debt is their greatest obstacle to saving and investing, the highest among all age groups.

● Those between the ages of 40 and 49 are most likely to say job loss or a large pay cut is the culprit for their inability to save (26%).

● Fifty-nine percent plan to cut back on holiday spending this year. This percentage is the same for those with and without children. Those ages 40 to 49 intend to scale back the most (69%).

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