Reston, VA, December 12, 2008 –– In a nationwide survey conducted by the American Consumer Institute, 93.4% of consumers say that the economy is worse than a year ago with only 1.1% saying that the economy is stronger. The results are significantly worse than the Institute’s December 2007 Consumer Pulse Survey, which found that 68.8% of consumers believed that the economy was worse than in the previous year.

The latest results show that consumer perceptions of the poor economy closely coincide with a drop-off in expected consumer spending during the holiday season. The survey found that 56.5% expect to spend less on holiday gifts, compared to 34.9% in last year’s survey. Only 5.8% of consumers expect to spend more this year, compared to 9.1% from a year ago.

The national survey of 1,000 heads-of-households was conducted over the period of December 4th to 7th and is part of the Institute’s 2009 Consumer Pulse Survey. These survey results have an accuracy of plus or minus 3%.

Demographic data is available upon request.