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There are new jobs produced but old worries persisting for people despite belt-tightening and boosted savings, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll.
About 46 percent of those surveyed say they’re suffering from debt-related stress, and half of that group described their stress as “great deal” or “quite a bit.” On the other hand, about 53 percent say they feel little or no stress at all.
That’s in line with findings from last year, even though times seem better today: The economy is growing and generating jobs, and households have made progress in repairing their financial footing, trimming debt, watching spending and saving more.
It’s a big turnaround from a year ago — a shrinking economy, jobs jettisoned as businesses struggled to survive the deepest recession since the 1930s.
So why aren’t the stressed — and the not-so-stressed — feeling better?
For starters, it just doesn’t feel much like a recovery to many people.
Unemployment is stubbornly high — 9.9 percent. The jobless face fierce competition for work. Those with a job are watching their paychecks shrink.
A growing number of people are at risk of falling into foreclosure, and only those with the most stellar credit probably can get a new loan. AP-GfK polls show that only 20 percent say the economy is good, compared with 15 percent last year.
The average amount owed on credit cards is $3,900, the poll said. Still, that’s down from $5,600 in the fall and $4,900 last spring.
Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press