Fifty-one percent of American adults consider the coronavirus pandemic economy worse than the 2008 recession, according to findings of a new survey from Edelman Financial Engines.
Twenty-six percent of respondents reported that they had withdrawn money from their retirement or savings accounts during the pandemic. Of those, 39% gave money to help a family member or friend in need, and 51% had paid their own bills.
It will take nearly six years to replenish their savings, on average, those who withdrew money said.
“Months into the pandemic, it’s clear that Americans are still struggling with the financial impact,” Ric Edelman, founder of Edelman Financial Engines, said in a statement. “It is likely that Americans will continue to struggle for some time.”
OnePoll conducted the online survey between Aug. 27 and Sept. 1 among 2,000 U.S. adults, ages 40 to 65, with an annual household income of more than $100,000.
The Nov. 3 elections are top of mind for those surveyed. Asked about the presidential candidates’ policy plans, 64% said the economy, 59% the pandemic and 51% health care were most important to them. Seventy-two percent said the candidates’ economic policies would sway their vote.
Other issues that have risen during the campaign ranked lower in their influence on voters’ preferences:
- Foreign policy – 25%
- Reaction to Black Lives Matter movement – 25%
- Education – 24%
- Environment – 20%
As to who will win the presidential vote, 97% of respondents believed their preferred candidate would win. This means that half will be disappointed, and a great many shocked, after a winner is confirmed, Edelman Financial Engines points out.
“It is likely that many people will be tempted to change their investment strategy as a result of the election,” Edelman said. “However, history shows that the financial markets tend to perform well regardless of what political party is in office.”
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