Recession has affected more than half of U.S. workers

The recession has directly affected more than half of working adults in the U.S. as they have faced unemployment, pay cuts and reduced hours, according to The Washington Post.

A Pew Research Center survey conducted in May interviewed a representative sample of 2,967 adults 18 and older. Almost half of respondents say they are in a worse financial situation because of the economic downturn, which destroyed 20 percent of Americans’ wealth.

The 9.7 percent of workers who have been unemployed for an average of six months were hit the hardest, and many Americans say they are delaying retirement and lowering their expectations for their children’s futures. Thirty-five percent of employed adults 62 and older have postponed retirement; 60 percent of employed adults between ages 50 and 61 say they also may be forced to postpone retirement.

More than 60 percent of Americans say they have cut back on borrowing and spending. Almost half of respondents say they plan to save more; nearly one-third say they plan to spend less; and 30 percent say they plan to borrow less.

Forty percent of adults have dipped into savings and retirement accounts for financial help. Nearly 25 percent have borrowed money from someone, and 10 percent have moved back in with their parents—including 24 percent of working adults ages 18 to 29.

However, many have an optimistic outlook. More than six in 10 respondents expect their financial situations to improve during the next year. Sixty-one percent believe the damage caused by the recession will be temporary.

Date : 7/2/2010