More workers satisfied with their pay: Gallup

By Aaron Smith, staff writer

NEW YORK ( -- More workers are satisfied with their pay, most likely because they feel lucky to have a job at all, according to Gallup poll results.

More than half of all U.S. workers -- some 53% -- believe they are paid an amount that is "about right" for their jobs, according to the poll, compared to 43% who said they're underpaid.

The number of people happy with their pay has actually increased in the last two years, even as the job market has grown steadily worse. A 2008 Gallup poll showed that 46% of U.S. workers believed their pay was "about right," compared to 51% who said they were underpaid.

"U.S. workers' heightened appreciation for their pay likely reflects today's challenging job market," according to the report, which was released on Thursday.

Gallup noted that the nationwide unemployment rate of 9.5% is "significantly higher" than the 6.1% jobless rate when Gallup conducted the same poll two years ago.

Gallup also reported that about a quarter of workers are "worried that they could soon lose their jobs or see a pay reduction -- nearly twice the August 2008 level."

"These findings help explain why workers may now be happier to hang on to their jobs they have than they were only two years ago, without looking for greater financial rewards," concluded the poll.

Bad news for the job market just keeps coming. On Thursday, the U.S. Labor Department reported that the number of first-time filers for unemployment insurance rose for the third time in a row, to 500,000 jobless claims for the week ended Aug. 14, the highest level in nine months. To top of page

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