47% find gas prices to be a very serious problem

May 12, 2011, 5:53 PM GMT+0

Some of the economic difficulties the President and the country face are the result of high gas prices — something most Americans in the latest Economist/YouGov Poll say has been a serious problem for their families. 

In fact, nearly half call higher gas prices a very serious problem for them and their families.

And the high gas prices have taken a toll: more than two of every three driving report cutting back on their driving, 43% say they have cut back on other household spending to pay their gasoline costs, and 26% say they have changed their summer vacation plans. But high prices have pushed fewer than one in ten to use alternative means of transit, like public transportation, carpooling or bike riding, about the same percentage who say they work from home more. More have thought seriously about buying a more fuel efficient car. 

Just 2% call gas prices over $4.00 a gallon a fair price; only 7% see gas prices over $3.00 as fair. And what makes it worse is that Americans see no relief in sight. More than half expect gas prices to be even higher in six months than they are now. Only 17% expect prices to go down. 

American expectations for full economic recovery are low, too. Two out of three believe it will take more than two years more to completely recover from the results of the recession. 

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