September 14, 2009
9/14: Most New Yorkers Think Recession But Are Optimistic
A whopping 90% of New York State voters say, “Yes, New York is in a recession.” In fact, just 9% believe this is not the case. Even with this dismal economic outlook, some voters are beginning to see a light at the end of the tunnel.
Voters in the Empire State are more optimistic about New York State’s economy. A majority – 52% — report it is staying the same, 29% believe it is getting worse, and 19% say it’s getting better. This is an improvement since Marist last asked this question. In July, voters were divided with 46% reporting the state’s economy was status quo, 46% saying it was declining, and 8% touting it was on the upswing.
Members of the electorate within New York City and Upstate are more upbeat about the state’s economy. Currently, 23% in the five boroughs and 17% Upstate think the economy is improving. This is in contrast with the 8% and 6%, respectively, who reported the same in Marist’s July survey.
When it comes to family finances, voters are also not ready to give up all hope. 55% statewide report that their family’s money matters will remain the same during the upcoming year. That’s the same proportion who thought this earlier this summer. In contrast, more voters today say they believe they will actually be able to loosen their belts during that time period. 27% currently report their personal family finances will improve. That’s a jump of seven percentage points from when Marist last asked this question. There are those, however, who do fear the worst, but that proportion has declined. 18% think they will have to pinch even more pennies over the next 12 months compared with 25% who said the same in July.
And, while nearly seven in ten voters statewide think the economic crisis will last more than a year, that’s a more optimistic figure than Marist measured in July. At that time, three quarters of the electorate held that view. Instead, more voters now – 28% — say today’s uncertain economic times will endure between 6 months and a year. That number was 21% earlier this summer.
However, there is not a consensus across the state. More voters in the suburbs than in any other part of the state think the economic crisis will last longer than a year. 74% in this region believe this to be true compared with 69% Upstate and 66% in New York City.
Yet, Unemployment Remains Problematic
The unfortunate reality is 80% of New York State’s voters know someone who has lost his or her job over the past 6 months. Earlier this summer, 77% reported that they personally knew someone who was affected by the unemployment crisis.