Page 2 The Skanner CAREERS EDITION June 1, 2016 CAREERS Poll: Americans More Upbeat About Own Finances Than Economy WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans are of two minds about the econ- omy in the midst of an election race that largely hinges on the issue. They are strikingly pessimis- tic about the national economy yet compara- tively upbeat about their own inancial circum- stances. Just 42 percent of adults describe the U.S. economy as good, accord- ing to a survey released Wednesday by The As- sociated Press-NORC Center for Public Afairs Research. But two-thirds say their own households are faring well. The divide suggests that despite their own inancial gains, many people worry about risks beyond their control — from a volatile stock market to another eco- nomic downturn. Just a third say they’d be very conident of inding an- other job if they were laid-of — a sign of vul- nerability even though the Great Recession oi- cially ended nearly seven AP PHOTO/JULIE JACOBSON, FILE JOSH BOAK EMILY SWANSON Associated Press In this March 4, 2016, ile photo, cranes move loads of materials at dusk at the Hudson Yards construction site in New York. Construction is rebounding across the United States, yet only 42 percent of adults describe the U.S. economy as good, according to a survey released Wednesday, May 18, 2016, by The Associated Press. But nearly two- thirds say their own households are faring well. That divide relects a country sharply split by political ailiation and education level in the midst of an intensely negative presidential race. years ago. Some of the diference also relects political views and education lev- els: Republicans are far more negative about the economy as President Barack Obama inishes his second term. And col- lege graduates are more sanguine about a recov- ery that rewarded them while largely neglecting workers without college degrees. The nation’s unemploy- ment rate has reached a healthy 5 percent, and workers’ pay shows ten- tative signs of accelerat- ing ater years of barely budging. Auto sales hit a record in April. Hous- ing and construction are rebounding. Americans are treating themselves to more restaurant meals. But for every gauge of the economy that’s point- ing up, another has be- come cause for unease. Hospitals have become dominant employers in most cities, yet health care costs are outpacing pay. Foreign imports have kept clothing and home appliance prices afordable. But those low- priced imports have cost U.S. jobs that in many cas- es haven’t been replaced. Across the country, the low-educated are strug- gling. And nothing has ignit- ed the robust economic growth that Americans remember enjoying un- til the Great Recession struck in late 2007. The United States has en- dured a dreary recovery from the worst down- turn since the Great De- pression. Just 23 percent of Americans say they think the economy will improve this year. Some view the slow growth as a sign that the economy has never es- caped the threat of anoth- er downturn. For years, they have seen the polit- ical class feud over how to accelerate economic growth and extend more opportunities to people who have been let out, with little to show for it. “It’s just real shaky right now,” said Dorothy Mszanski, 60, a former steelworker who had to retire on disability. “It’s like nobody can igure out what to do.” Living outside Youngstown, Ohio, Mszanski sees her fami- ly’s situation as relative- ly stable. Her husband works an auto body and paint shop. The couple has built up retirement savings ater years of work and raised three adult children. Yet Mszanski fears econom- ic risks that could upend their lives. A stock market crash would deplete her hus- band’s 401(k) account. Her medical bills could keep soaring to impossi- ble heights, a challenge she is already straining to handle. “I’ve had chronic back pain, and I’m a diabetic and I’m on oxygen 24-7,” she said. “If my medi- cation keeps going up, there will be a time that I won’t be able to aford to eat or buy my medicine. So what are you going to do?” That anxiety remains rooted in many commu- nities even as Ameri- cans see some economic gains. The more than 40 percent who describe the economy as good com- pare with just 26 percent who said so in an October 2013 AP-GfK survey. Doubts about the econ- omy lie at the heart of the split over which presidential candidate is best equipped to lead the country: Donald Trump, the real estate mogul whose aggressive eco- nomic nationalism has made him the presump- tive Republican nominee, or Hillary Clinton, the Democratic front-run- ner who has campaigned as a get-things-done poli- cymaker. Sentiments about the economy tend to paral- lel Americans’ political views. With a Democrat having occupied the White House for seven years, Republicans with a dislike for Obama’s policies tend to express discontent with the econ- omy. Just 34 percent of Re- publicans call the nation- al economy good, com- pared with 54 percent of Democrats. Thirty-eight percent of Republican supporters say they expect the econ- omy to deteriorate this year, versus 18 percent of Democrats.