Poll: Finances declines for NJ consumers

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - October 13, 2008 The poll released Monday by Fairleigh Dickinson University's Silberman College of Business finds 58 percent of New Jerseyans surveyed said they are now worse off financially than in 2007, a sharp increase since January when just 41 percent of residents gave that response.

However, more than half (53 percent) reported they were not having trouble paying the balance on their credit cards, compared with 30 percent who said keeping up with payments is difficult. And while half of the respondents said the recent crisis in the financial markets has affected their personal finances, 46 percent say they have not been directly affected.

Meanwhile, just 29 percent believe the situation will be worse a year from now, which is down from 36 percent in July, and more than a third (37 percent) say the situation will improve within 12 months.

Nearly 60 percent of people under 30 believe things will be better in a year, while just a quarter of those over 60 think so.

The telephone survey of 1,002 adults was conducted from Sept. 29-Oct. 6 by Fairleigh Dickinson's PublicMind and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percent.

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