Nearly six-in-ten Americans (58%) now say that their incomes are falling behind the rising cost of living, compared with just 44% who expressed this view in September 2007. The general sense that prices have risen rapidly in recent years is much more prevalent now than at the beginning of the Bush administration. Overall, 79% of the public says that over the past five years prices have risen “a lot;” in June 2001, 63% said that prices had increased a great deal over the previous five years. People’s personal financial concerns are more varied, and differ considerably along socioeconomic lines. The leading personal financial concerns of the poorest Americans are healthcare costs, jobs, and simply not having enough money to get by. By contrast, the leading concern among wealthy people is retirement and Social Security. Read More

Russell Heimlich  is a former web developer at Pew Research Center.