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CCFB News» October 2018

From the CountryOne third of Americans Still Feeling Pain of the Great Recession

One third of Americans still feeling pain of the Great Recession


The housing market crash that emerged in late 2007 and snowballed into the worldwide economic crisis now known as the Great Recession is still being felt today.


The COUNTRY Financial Security Index survey asked Americans about their personal financial recovery as we approach the decade mark of the Great Recession. The study revealed that nearly one-in-three Americans (30 percent) believe they have yet to recover financially or never will, despite signals from the Federal Reserve that the U.S. economy is growing.


A long road

Two-thirds of Americans (64 percent) report they have fully recovered financially from the Recession, but it has been a slow process for many. More than half of all Americans (57 percent) report they needed three years or more to fully financially recover, or have yet to recover.


The survey also revealed a gender gap between those whose finances have improved with the nation’s economic recovery and those who have not.


My personal finances are better now than before the recession

    Men: 61% yes

    Women: 49% yes


Lessons learned

Regardless of demographic, Americans had similar go-to strategies to get through the recession.

This included:

  • Tightening their belts and cutting expenses (35 percent)
  • Getting a new job (17 percent)
  • Taking on credit card debt to cope with the effects of the recession (11 percent)


The survey revealed Americans have adopted a more prudent stance when making financial choices and a cautious attitude toward money. Only six percent of respondents said they have increased their spending in today’s economy, compared to the 89 percent who cut back or kept daily spending levels the same.



If the fallout of the financial crisis forced Americans to change their financial practices, the lesson was one of personal engagement.


The study revealed an overwhelming sense of self-reliance as Americans believe their financial security and recovery is in their hands. The majority of respondents believe they personally have the greatest impact on their financial security (63 percent), compared to their company (9 percent) or the president of the United States (7 percent). 


About the COUNTRY Financial Security Index®

Since 2007, the COUNTRY Financial Security Index has measured Americans' sentiments of their personal financial security. The Index also delves deeper into individual personal finance topics to better inform Americans about the issues impacting their finances. Survey data, videos and analysis are available at and on Twitter at @ helloCOUNTRY.


The COUNTRY Financial Security Index was created by COUNTRY Financial. This survey was conducted by EMC Research, Inc., an independent research firm, commissioned by COUNTRY Financial. Surveys were conducted using a national online research panel designed to be representative of the general population and includes responses from 1,000 U.S. adults over the age of 18 for national surveys with additional interviews completed in Georgia, Illinois, Missouri and Oregon to bring the total in each of those states to 500 completed surveys.

Vicki may be reached at [email protected]

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