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Gloomy Outlook

Americans see little improvement in the economy and are conflicted about how to balance concerns over joblessness and the federal budget deficit, the latest Bloomberg National Poll shows

Would you say you are better off or worse off today than 18 months ago, or about the same?

Better off: 17%

Worse off: 29%

About the same: 54%

The U.S. currently has a huge budget deficit and a high unemployment rate. Which should take priority?

Reducing the budget deficit: 28%

Reducing the unemployment rate: 70%

Not sure: 2%

Which of the following best describes your attitude toward the federal budget deficit?

Dangerously out of control and threatens our economic future: 52%

A manageable burden that will require sacrifice down the road: 43%

Will cause no lasting harm: 4%

Not sure: 1%

In paying for the oil spill, which of the following do you think is the best option?

BP must pay for it all, even if it goes bankrupt: 56%

BP shouldn't be forced to pay beyond what it can afford, with taxpayers picking up the rest: 4%

There should be a cap on what is paid out: 38%

Not sure: 2%

How confident are you that new financial regulations will make your savings and financial assets more secure?

Very confident: 4%

Fairly confident: 15%

Just somewhat confident: 38%

Not confident: 40%

Not sure: 3%

The poll of 1,004 U.S. adults was conducted July 9-12 by Selzer & Co. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

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