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Study: Despite rally, pessimism reins

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Allstate and National Journal’s latest survey finds that although the U.S. may be emerging from the recession, Americans are pessimistic about the years ahead. Specifically, 62 percent of Americans believe the U.S. economy will experience more dramatic boom-and-bust cycles than in the past, and 57 percent expect the standard of living for people like them to grow more slowly than in recent decades.

According to survey findings, confidence in several major institutions has dropped off from 12 months ago. The majority of respondents say that they have less confidence in major corporations (58%), national banks (56%), investment banks (61%), and elected officials in Washington (53%).