More than half of Americans think the so-called American Dream is dying.
According to a new poll conducted by ORC International for CNNMoney, 59 percent of the U.S. now believes that the American Dream is impossible for most Americans to achieve. That figure is up from 54 percent in 2006, before the recession.
The poll did not specify how people define the American Dream, but historically many have defined it as the ability to obtain a better lot in life through hard work.
A declining faith in the American Dream has gone hand in hand with the stagnation of wages and in turn, the shrinking of the middle class. In recent years, more than half of all Americans have had to cut back in some form just in order to pay their rent of cover their mortgage payments, according to Marketplace.
Americans are also concerned about what the future hold for the next generation of Americans. Sixty-three percent of respondents said that most children will grow up to be worse off than their parents, according to the CNNMoney poll.
"The pessimism is reflective of the financial realities a lot of families are facing," Erin Currier, director of the Economic Mobility Project at Pew Charitable Trusts, told CNN. "They are treading water, but their income is not translating into solid financial security."