Stories

Most in Europe, U.S. think economy will be worse for their children

Marc Duncan / AP

In a new Pew survey, respondents from around the world were asked whether they feel the current economic situation is good, and whether they think their children will be better off financially than they are. For the second question in particular, there are some interesting findings:

  • Optimists: Nigeria (72%), Chile (69%), Ghana (63%), Philippines (61%), Brazil (56%)
  • Pessimists: France (9%), Japan (19%), Greece (21%), Australia, Canada, U.K (24%)
  • The U.S. perspective: 58% say things are currently good, 37% say things will be better for the next generation.

The trends:

In many developed countries — Germany for example — people generally think the economy is in good shape (86%), but far fewer think it will be better for the next generation (36%). That suggests a sense that things have peaked, and it's downhill from here, a mindset that can bleed over into politics. In many developing countries, though, there's more optimism about where the economy is heading.