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Americans are Optimistic About the New Year

Written by Jennifer Agiesta, with help from Stacy A. Anderson

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans are hopeful for what 2012 will bring for their families and the country, according to a new Associated Press-GfK poll, though most say 2011 was a year they would rather forget.

Nearly seven in 10 say the year gone by was a bad one, more than double those who consider it a success, according to the poll. But 62 percent are optimistic about what 2012 will bring for the nation, and more, 78 percent, are hopeful about the year their family will have in 2012.

Jeff Wolfe, 33, of Farmington, W.Va., said 2011 treated him well because he was able to find steady work as a lineman. But for the rest of the nation, things were “pretty rough,” with so many Americans looking for jobs, he noted.

“For the first time since 2009, I worked all year,” he said. Wolfe said he lost work in 2008 and again in 2010. But in 2011, the father of two school-age children said he was able to catch up on bills, buy his wife a new car and renovate his home.

Read more here…

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