CNN Poll Highlights The Growing Worry of Average Americans

CNN Opinion Research Poll - LogoA new CNN Opinion Research poll (released on June 8th) asked this question:

"As you may know, the U.S. went through a depression in the 1930s in which roughly one out of four workers were unemployed, banks failed across the country, and millions of ordinary Americans were temporarily homeless or unable to feed their families. Do you think it is very likely, somewhat likely, not very likely, or not likely at all that another depression like that will occur in the U.S. within the next 12 months?"

Here is the breakdown of the responses to the poll:

Very likely - 19%
Somewhat likely - 29%
Not very likely - 32%
Not likely at all - 19%
No opinion - 1%

So, according to this poll, nearly half of Americans (48%) believe that there is a good chance that the United States enters into a depression before this time next year.

Let's compare this to the five other times between October of 2008 and now when CNN has posed the same question:

June 2011 - 48% of Americans believe that a depression is at least "somewhat likely" over the next 12 months

December 2009 - 43%
July/August 2009 - 41%
March 2009 - 45%
December 2008 - 38%
October 2008 - 41%

It's pretty unbelievable that more people are worried now about a near-term depression than in late 2008 or early 2009, considering what was taking place with the economy back then.

On the other hand, maybe it's not so surprising, considering that the economy seems to be grinding to a halt, energy and food prices are sky-high, many savings accounts across the country have been depleted, the housing market has officially double dipped and the nation's politicians are embroiled in a battle over the debt ceiling.

Given all of that, maybe it's not so surprising that nearly half of the country is feeling so morose and gloomy.

Source: CNN Opinion Research Poll June 3-7/2011 (*.pdf)

Filed under: The Economic Meltdown

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