American Optimism for Future Trumps Worry Over Economy

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A recent survey indicates Americans are increasingly hopeful for the future, despite troubling economic news. On the eve of a national bailout package, research indicates Americans are optimistic the future will be bright. Qualtrics' third Worry Index shows what Americans worry about and how they view those issues.

December 2008 Worry Index

Research shows Americans are surprisingly optimistic about their future quality of life despite saying they are very unhappy about their current state

Despite overwhelmingly grim economic news, Americans believe 2009 will be a year of economic improvement and increased quality of life, according to a new survey.

Qualtrics Labs Inc., a pioneer in enterprise feedback management and survey software, found only 17 percent of respondents said they were happy or somewhat happy with America's overall quality of life in December 2008 compared with 38 percent in November 2007. This dramatic shift likely reflects the economic recession.

President Obama's message of hope may have resonated with the 34 percent of Americans who believe their overall quality of life will improve in the next year, compared with 17 percent in February 2008.

"Research shows Americans are surprisingly optimistic about their future quality of life despite saying they are very unhappy about their current state," said Ryan Smith, director of Qualtrics. "These two statistics may reflect the resiliency of America--as things get worse, we become increasingly optimistic for a brighter future."

Job losses and reduced spending haven't dampened America's hope; 35 percent of Americans believe the economy will improve within the next year. This is remarkably optimistic considering the negative news that is constantly released about the economy.

Qualtrics conducts a survey on America's worries and compiles an index quarterly.

The latest survey had 526 respondents on December 12, 2008.

The entire report can be found here.

About Qualtrics
Qualtrics is the premiere research survey software, used by the world's leading universities and corporations. Our client list is proof Qualtrics offers a unique, streamlined product with the professionalism of your corporate interface. Visit our Web site and see why everyone wants to know what they're really thinking™.

Qualtrics Worry Index December 2008
This index, compiled by Dr. Scott Smith at the Institute of Marketing at Brigham Young University, shows how often Americans worry about different issues compared with how important the issues are to them. It will be released quarterly by Qualtrics. For more information about the Worry Index, contact Qualtrics.

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