Monday, November 24, 2008

Economic Crisis Survey: Results

Very sobering results from my survey last month on the state of the economy, and how it's affecting our decisions. But also some very good ideas on how to kick-start things.

Here are the basic results:

1. People are seeing and feeling the impact directly: Of those surveyed, 66% know someone who has lost his/her job, 37% know someone who has lost their home to foreclosure, and 69% said their employer has been negatively impact by the economy. 54% say the current state of affairs will reduce their holiday shopping "some," and 35% say they will reduce shopping "very much."

2. Respondents are pessimistic about the prospects of recovery before late 2009. Only 6.4% believe the economy will recover in late 2008, and only 19.1% believe it will stabilize and begin to recover in early-mid 2009. 42.6% believe the economy will slump for most of 2009, and that recovery will begin by the end of 2009. And 34% believe it will slump the entire year. On the positive side, 70% believe the election of a new President will help improve things.

3. People were mixed on the bailout of Wall St., but leaned against it overall. 35% supported it to some degree; 18.% were neutral; and 46% were opposed to some degree. (Interesting results, given that the local Member of Congress who voted against the bailout lost, and the one who supported it won).

4. There was much blame to go around on who was responsible for the mess, but the most oft-blamed were 1) The Bush Administration (73% selected as playing a significant role); 2) subprime lenders (73%); Wall St. (69%); deregulation practices (69%); individual consumers/homebuyers (61.8%).

Of the policy options and solutions floated:

- At the national level, people are most supportive of the following solutions: 1) energy independence plan; 2) health care reform; 3) reduced government spending; and 4) better oversight/regulation of Wall St.

- At the County level, people are most supportive of the following solutions: 1) efforts to attract more jobs/businesses to area; 2) creating an innovation economy; 3) make the region more business friendly; and 4) investment in infrastructure.

Thanks for your input. This was very valuable feedback.

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