As the recovery from the Great Recession proceeds at an uneven pace for many Americans, a Washington Post-Miller Center poll taking the public’s pulse on the economy finds a high degree of anxiety among many about being able to get ahead financially, the difficulty of finding good jobs and, for those that are employed, concern about losing them.

(Credit: Washington Post-Miller Center poll)

About six-in-ten (62%) of those surveyed said they worried a lot or a little about losing their job because of the economy, with 32% saying they worried a lot. The joint Post-Miller Center poll said this figure surpassed the level of concern about losing jobs registered in more than a dozen surveys dating to the 1970s. The poll was conducted in September.

The survey noted that 54% of workers earning $35,000 or less worried a lot about losing their jobs compared to 37% who had that concern in 1992.

About three-quarters (74%) said finding good jobs had become harder.

Nearly half (48%) in the poll said they felt less financially secure as they did a few years ago, compared with 23% who felt more secure and 29% who described their circumstances as about the same.

While more than half (54%) considered their current standard of living to be better than that of their parents at the same age, a smaller number —39% —believed their children’s standard of living would be better than theirs at the same age.

The lingering effects of the Great Recession had also been captured in a Pew Research Center poll conducted in September. More than half (54%) of those surveyed said their household incomes had hardly recovered and 52% said the same about the job situation.

Bruce Drake  is a former senior editor at Pew Research Center.