U.S. inflation hit 8.6% last month, a new 40-year high

The costs of gas, food and other necessities jumped in May, raising inflation to a new four-decade high and giving American households no respite from rising costs.

The glum attitude about the state’s direction was shared, to varying degrees, by California voters of nearly every age group, ethnicity and political stripe. Just over half of Democrats said the state is headed in the wrong direction, and 93% of Republicans agreed with that gloomy assessment.

Only 21% of voters said they were financially better off than they were a year ago, 42% said they were worse off and 34% said there had been no change.

The survey showed voters are pessimistic about the future: Only 21% predicted they will be better off financially in a year, 30% said they would be worse off, and 44% expected no change in their financial situation.

The poll found that voters now rank the coronavirus near the bottom of a list of 15 challenges facing the state, far behind problems such as housing affordability, homelessness, crime, gas prices and climate change.

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