If the economy seems like it's running on idle, maybe that's because consumers feel the same way. In fact, our June 21 Reader Survey seemed to find readers in a darker mood than when we asked a number of the same questions on Apr. 17.
Of the 1,000-plus readers who responded to the latest survey -- which isn't a scientific poll, since anyone who wishes to can participate -- nearly 52% said they're doing O.K. financially, vs. 49.5% back in April.
From there, though, the news gets worse. Some 27% of those who answered the June survey said they're in distress financially, vs. only 15% in April. Perhaps that's because 65% said they don't expect a pay raise this year, vs. 50% who had that expectation in April.
The percentage of people who feel that their jobs are "very secure" also fell -- to 20% in the latest survey, from 42% in the earlier one. Some 36% think the economy will be on the way to recovery six months from now -- but that's down from 53% who felt that way in April. Some 45% of those who responded to the June survey think the economy will still be struggling six months from now, vs. the 31% who felt that way in April.
Nearly 60% said they're less optimistic about their financial situation than they were six months ago, though 17% are more optimistic, and 21% are as optimistic.
Here are the detailed results:
How are you doing financially?
I'm in distress
I'm O.K., assuming no sudden reduction in income
I'm in good shape, with plenty of cushion
Do you expect to receive a pay raise this year?
How secure is your job?
Six months from now, where do you think the economy will be?
On the way to recovery
Worse than it is now
On balance, are you more optimistic -- or less -- about your individual financial situation than you were six months ago?