Fewer than two in five American adults say they will make positive financial changes in the coming year, including paying down their level of debt (39%) and saving more money (36%), according to a newly released report from Harris Interactive.
In an online survey of 2,237 adults, Harris Interactive fewer Americans plan to pay down their level of debt this year than said so in the past two years – 39% now, compared to between 41% and 45% previously. Only 36% say they will save more in the year ahead, compared to 40% who said so last year and 42% who said so in 2009. Only one in 10 expect to undertake home improvements to increase the value of their home (11%), while less than one in 10 planned to make less risky investments (5%) and take out a home equity line of credit (2%) in 2012.
Americans were equally pessimistic about the national economy: Only 23% of those surveyed believed that the economy will improve in the year ahead, which is down from 29% who said so one year ago. Rather, 29% say they expect the economy will get worse in 2012, while 47% expect it will stay the same.