Most Americans say their financial standing has changed little in the past year, according to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll. A near majority of Americans say they expect few changes in the coming year, either ― although those who voted for Donald Trump are decidedly more optimistic than those who supported Hillary Clinton.
A 54 percent majority of those polled say they and their family are doing about the same financially as they were a year ago, with 15 percent saying they’re better off and 26 percent saying they’re worse off. Forty-eight percent expect that they’ll be doing about the same a year from now, while 27 percent expect to be better off and 15 percent think they’ll be worse off.
Just a third of Americans say they’re making enough money to live comfortably, while 40 percent say they’re just making enough to get by and 18 percent say they’re not even getting by. About three-quarters report worrying “sometimes” or “all the time” about their financial situation.
The public’s assessments have changed relatively little since a HuffPost/YouGov survey conducted in December 2015. The biggest change is a modest increase in the share of Americans who aren’t concerned about their finances. Thirty-three percent now say they’re making enough money to live comfortably, up 6 points since December 2015. The percentage who say they worry “all the time” about their financial situation also fell modestly, from 33 percent last December to 27 percent in the more recent survey.
Unsurprisingly, Americans are divided along financial lines. Thirty-seven percent of those living in households making less than $50,000 a year say they worry about money all the time, compared to just 9 percent of those in households making $100,000 or more.
But there are also political divides. Twenty-one percent of Americans who voted for Hillary Clinton say that they’re better off financially than they were a year ago, while just 9 percent of those who voted for Donald Trump say the same.
Looking ahead, however, 36 percent of Trump voters, compared to just 18 percent of Clinton voters, expect to be better off financially a year from now.
Still, Clinton and Trump supporters’ assessments of their current situation are, by another measure, broadly similar.
Forty percent of Americans who voted for Clinton, and 42 percent of those who voted for Trump, describe themselves as living comfortably. Forty-one percent of Clinton voters and 44 percent of Trump supporters say they’re just getting by, while 14 percent and 12 percent, respectively, say they’re not even managing that.
Americans who didn’t turn out to vote, in contrast, are considerably more likely to say they have financial troubles ― a finding that dovetails with other studies that have found financially insecure Americans among the least likely to make their voices heard at the ballot box.
Just 24 percent of non-voters say they’re making enough to live comfortably, with 38 percent saying that they’re just getting by, and 23 percent saying they’re not making enough to get by.
The HuffPost/YouGov poll consisted of 1,000 completed interviews conducted Nov. 22-28 among U.S. adults, using a sample selected from YouGov’s opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the adult U.S. population.
The Huffington Post has teamed up with YouGov to conduct daily opinion polls. You can learn more about this project and take part in YouGov’s nationally representative opinion polling. Data from all HuffPost/YouGov polls can be found here. More details on the polls’ methodology are available here.
Most surveys report a margin of error that represents some, but not all, potential survey errors. YouGov’s reports include a model-based margin of error, which rests on a specific set of statistical assumptions about the selected sample, rather than the standard methodology for random probability sampling. If these assumptions are wrong, the model-based margin of error may also be inaccurate. Click here for a more detailed explanation of the model-based margin of error.