WASHINGTON (AP) - Large number of Americans see 2013 as anything but a banner year and aren't reluctant to wave goodbye on New Year's Eve, a new AP-Times Square poll says, reflecting anxiety stretching from the corridors of power in Washington to corporate boardrooms, statehouses, and city and town halls.
Although the poll shows that people generally are looking forward to the new year with optimism and no blatant sense of foreboding, it also unmasks pent-up worries about international crises and instability, and concerns at home about the standard of living, health care and schools.
What the public thought of 2013:
Richard Mattos, 59, looks for jobs at a state-run employment center in Salem, Ore., on Thursday.
GOOD YEAR OR GOOD RIDDANCE?
On the whole, Americans rate their own experience in 2013 more positively than negatively. But when asked to assess the year for the United States or the world at large, things turn sour.
But the outlook for the new year is positive: 49 percent think their own fortunes will improve in 2014, 14 percent are anticipating the new year to be a downgrade from the old. Thirty-four percent say they don't expect much to change.
WHERE'S THE PARTY?
Most Americans - 54 percent - say they'll be ringing in the new year at home, while 1 in 5 are heading to a friend's or family member's house. Only 8 percent say they'll go to a bar, restaurant or other organized event.
Wherever they're spending the holiday, most Americans prefer the company of family. Asked with whom they want to be when the clock strikes midnight, 83 percent name say family.