Poll: More NYers say they aren't better off than 4 years ago

Posted at: 10/12/2012 11:57 AM
Updated at: 10/15/2012 12:56 PM
By: Beth Wurtmann

LOUDONVILLE - Are you better off now than four years ago? A new Siena Research Institute poll finds that more people in New York are answering "no" to that question.

Wendy Molina, a Niskayuna resident, said money is much tighter now than four years ago, forcing her to work six days a week as a home aid for the elderly to make ends meet.

"Expenses are up. Gas, everything is going up. Everything is going up, but the money's not going up," she said.

The poll found when asked if they are better off now than four years ago, 47 percent of New Yorkers said no. Thirty-five percent said yes, they are better off. Seventeen percent said their personal finances are unchanged.

Financial advisor Steve Carleton of Janney Montgomery Scott said the frustration comes with climbing gas, food and health care costs.

"For the last four years, all those costs are going higher, faster than the people's income. That's what people are feeling. When they say they aren't better off, they're not making more money, but everything they spend on a daily basis is going higher," said Carleton.

The poll also found, 26 percent of New Yorkers said job security is worse than four years ago. Forty percent said monthly income to cover expenses got worse.

Forty percent also said their investments and savings are worse off as well.

Although, not everyone has a bleak outlook.

"I was laid off from my last job two years ago and I recently just got a job and it's looking up for people," said Leah Clark of Schenectady. "I say to anybody who is discouraged, jobs are out there. Jobs are coming."

The poll also found 62 percent of New Yorkers have a savings account with at least $1,000 in it. Forty-one percent said they have enough saved away to cover six months of household expenses.