March 2011: Financial security

Financial Security Index survey chart

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Compared to 12 months ago, do you feel your overall financial situation is better today, worse today or about the same?

  • Americans' sense of financial security has been dropping this year, with the Financial Security Index falling from 98.5 in January to 97.0 in March. (A reading of 100 indicates the sense of financial security is unchanged.) In December, the FSI was 94.6.
  • The proportion of people who feel they're better off than they were one year ago declined 1 percent from February.
  • One hopeful sign: The proportion of people who feel they're worse off was down 3 percentage points.

Recovery doesn't mean that it's all wrapped up in 30 minutes …

Robert Fragasso

CEO, Fragasso Financial Advisors, Pittsburgh

The fact that nearly a quarter of people feel their financial situation has improved is encouraging, but I would think it should be higher. We've had an extremely severe downturn and a sluggish recovery. But the fact is, we're in a recovery. Recovery doesn't mean that it's all wrapped up in 30 minutes including commercials. A recovery is going to take months up to a couple of years before it plays its way through. None of this is zingy. It's boring, plodding rebuilding.

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