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Gallup poll: Americans optimistic about 2013

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The New Year often brings new hope, and Americans are overwhelmingly optimistic about what life will bring in 2013.

According to Gallup, about 69 percent of Americans say they're optimistic about how they and their family will do this year, while 27 percent remain pessimistic. Gallup points out that Americans usually are more optimistic about their own personal futures than they are about the future of the country.

Gallup previously reported on the negativity most Americans expressed about the U.S. economy and international affairs. In that report, 33 percent of Americans say 2013 will be a year of economic prosperity and 23 percent say this year will bring international peace.

Gallup also discovered that Americans' attitudes about the coming year are related to their political and ideological orientation. Democrats and liberals are the most optimistic about the coming year, while Republicans and conservatives were the most negative. The pattern is not unusual, according to Gallup. Past research has shown Democrats are the most positive about the economy in general and are most likely to say the country's best years lie ahead.

"Still, Americans of all political and ideological persuasions are at least slightly more likely to say they are optimistic than pessimistic about their personal situation in the coming year," according to Gallup.

Optimism isn't reserved just for Democrats. Gallup found young people also have a more positive outlook. In the 18-29 age rang, 80 percent of Americans are optimistic while 15 percent are pessimistic. In addition, women are slightly more positive than men and easterners and westerners are more optimistic than those living in the South or Midwest. Gallup noted there is little significant difference in personal optimism across socioeconomic segments. Those with higher levels of education and higher incomes are generally no more optimistic or pessimistic than those with lower socioeconomic status.