Pew Research Center recently published survey findings regarding Americans’ attitudes about their financial prospects for the coming year.

If optimism equates with donor largesse, nonprofits should be in for a good 2007.

Some key findings:

    • About four-in-ten American adults say they are living comfortably, while another three-in-ten say they have enough money to meet expenses with a little left over for extras.
    • Two-thirds of adults expect their family’s financial situation to improve over the next year by a lot (10%) or some (57%).
    • 81% of adults rate their overall quality of life as “excellent” or “good.”

Among college grads, the news suggesting ability to give is even better, considering that higher education is a primary correlate of higher giving. This group pulls up the averages:

    • Half of college grads say they are living comfortably, while another 32% say they have enough money to meet expenses with a little left over for extras.
    • Seven-in-ten college grads expect their financial situation will improve over the next year by a lot (13%) or some (59%).
    • 93% of college grads rate their overall quality of life as “excellent” or “good.”

Those ages 65 and older, the historic base of direct mail giving, most of whom are retired, are the least optimistic about their financial futures and their overall quality of life.

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