Americans Say Their Financial Situation Has Gotten Worse, Not Better, by More Than Two-to-One

Craig Bannister | December 28, 2023
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More than twice as many Americans say their finances have deteriorated over the last six months as report they’ve improved – and a majority of those who’ve suffered loses expect things to get even worse in the months to come – a new national survey reveals.

According to results of a new Rasmussen survey released Wednesday, 41% of American adults say their financial situation has gotten worse, while just 17% say it’s gotten better.

Worse, 60% of those who’ve seen their finances dwindle also expect them to decline even more in the six months to come – nearly five times the 13% who think they’ll improve.

Conversely, two-thirds (67%) of those who experienced financial gain say they expect even brighter times ahead, dwarfing the mere 8% who are pessimistic about what the next six months holds.

A plurality of all Americans expect their finances to get worse, not better (32% vs. 25%).

Lower-income Americans fared worse than their wealthier counterparts and are more pessimistic about the future, the survey finds.

A 52% majority of those earning $50,000 or less say their financial situation has gotten worse, compared to about a quarter of those earning more than $100,000 a year.

Regarding the next six months, lower-income Americans are more likely to think their financial circumstances will get worse:

  • Under $30K: 43%
  • $31K-49K: 38%
  • $50K-$99K: 32%
  • $100K-$199K: 16%
  • $200K+: 28%
  • All Americans: 25% expect their financial situation will worsen


Indeed, Americans’ financial circumstances continue to be worse during Pres. Joe Biden’s presidency that they were during the previous administration led by Donald Trump:

  • Inflation thus far under Biden is on pace to increase three times as much as it did during Trump's full, four-year term.
  • While gas prices held steady under Pres. Donald Trump (down four cents a gallon), they’ve surged 42% in the first 34 months of Pres. Joe Biden’s term.
  • After accounting for inflation, real wages earned by Americans have declined under Biden, from a median of $373 to $365 a week. Under Trump, however, real wages rose from $352 to $373.
  • Mortgage rates today are more than twice the average rate home buyers paid when Trump left office.
  • Americans’ average savings rate has declined to a quarter of what is was under Trump (from 13.4% to 3.8%).


Half (49%) of today's likely voters think Pres. Biden's handling of the economy has been "poor," while 37% give it a positive rating, a recent Rasmussen survey found.

Biden's handling of the economy would've been rated much worse, if not for Democrat voters.

Seventy-seven percent (77%) of Republicans and 55% of unaffiliated voters give Biden a poor rating on the economy, compared to 19% of Democrats. And, while 62% of Democrats rate Biden either good or excellent on his handling of the economy, only 16% of Republicans and 29% of unaffiliated voters agree.

The business and economic reporting of CNSNews is funded in part with a gift made in memory of Dr. Keith C. Wold.