BLOOMINGTON, Ill., Jan. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- While Americans brace for another year of economic uncertainty, many have given up hope on returning to the pre-recession economy. According to the latest COUNTRY Financial Security Index® survey, just 27 percent think the old, pre-recession economy will return. Half of these Americans don't expect to see it return until 2015 or later.
If the current economic reality is here to stay, Americans are cautiously optimistic about their ability to be financially secure in this economy. Nearly two-thirds (63 percent) are at least somewhat confident they can meet their financial goals and needs. However, 27 percent are not very confident.
Americans are divided over whether personal or governmental changes are needed to improve their financial security in the current economy.
"With the most optimistic believing a full economic recovery is years away, the need for people to take control of their money has never been greater," says Joe Buhrmann, manager of financial security support at COUNTRY Financial. "It's encouraging a majority are confident they can meet their financial goals. However, financial security is different for everyone. Redefine your financial security in this economy and revisit your goals. Create a plan to achieve them in this economic climate."
See what's changed since President Obama took office in the depths of the recession. For expert analysis on whether our pre-recession economy can return, watch an interview at www.countryfinancialsecurityindex.com.
The Recession's Lasting Impact
The impact of the recession goes beyond the years of economic recovery for a number of Americans. Half have permanently changed how they manage their money, many altering every aspect of their finances.
Half of Americans permanently
manage their money differently
Cut spending or downsized
More closely follow a budget
Reduced purchases on credit
More conservative investments
All of the above
"Spending is only one part of the financial security equation," adds Buhrmann. "You need to consider all the variables. Sticking to a budget is especially important, and it's something we can all strive to do. A realistic budget is the foundation of any strong financial plan."
Entrepreneurs Less Confident in New Economy
Entrepreneurs are least likely to expect a return to the pre-recession economy, compared to government and private company workers. They are also less confident about their finances in this new economy.
An infographic depicting how the concerns of entrepreneurs compare to government workers and private company employees can be downloaded at www.countryfinancialsecurityindex.com
To access video interviews about the latest COUNTRY Index data, please visit www.countryfinancialsecurityindex.com. Individuals can also learn more and compare their own results with the national COUNTRY Financial Security Index. The next COUNTRY Financial Security Index will be released June 18, 2013 and subsequently every six months. The next trend survey will be released February 19, 2013.
The COUNTRY Financial Security Index®
Since 2007, the COUNTRY Financial Security Index has measured Americans' sentiments of their personal financial security. The COUNTRY Index also delves deeper into individual personal finance topics to better inform Americans about the issues impacting their finances. Survey data, videos and analysis are available at www.countryfinancialsecurityindex.comand on Twitter at @FinanceSecure.
The COUNTRY Index was created by COUNTRY Financial and is compiled by Rasmussen Reports, LLC, an independent research firm, based on a national telephone and online survey of at least 3,000 Americans.
The margin of sampling error for a survey based on this many interviews is approximately +/- 2 percentage points with a 95 percent level of confidence.
COUNTRY Financial (http://www.countryfinancial.com) serves about one million households and businesses throughout the United States. It offers a full range of financial products and services from auto, home and life insurance to retirement planning services, investment management and annuities.
SOURCE COUNTRY Financial