SWS: 41% Pinoys Expect Life to Improve in Next 12 Months

Some 41 percent of Filipinos expect life to improve in the next 12 months, according to a poll conducted by Social Weather Stations in the last quarter of 2014.

In the survey conducted Nov. 27 to Dec. 1, Filipinos were most optimistic about personal prospects as well as the economy in the last five quarters, SWS said.

It said, 41 percent of respondents expect the quality of life to improve in the following 12 months while six percent said otherwise.

This meant net personal optimism, or the difference of optimists and pessimists, was at a “very high” +35 from +33 in 2013 and +30 (39 percent optimists, 9 percent pessimists) in the third quarter.

As for economic outlook, SWS said 31 percent expect the economy to get better in the next 12 months compared to 15 percent who said it would deteriorate.

In September, only 30 percent were optimistic while 19 percent were pessimistic about their economic prospects.

Optimism about the economy was “very high,” up five points to +16 from +11 in September and double the December 2013 survey’s +8.

The results of the survey were posted Thursday night on SWS’ media partner BusinessWorld.

Last quarter, the Philippine’s gross domestic product grew by a fast 6.9 percent, though full-year GDP growth was at 6.1 percent.

In the SWS survey, net optimism about the economy refers to expectations about the general Philippine economy, while net personal optimism refers to expectations in one’s personal quality of life.

Life ‘improved’

When asked how their lives changed over the preceding 12 months, 29 percent said it had improved (gainers) and 30 percent said it worsened (losers).

This meant a “fair” -1 net gainers score, up by seven points from the “fair” -8 (26 percent gainers, 34 percent losers) in September.

It was the best score since the “very high” +11 in March 1987.

Net optimism classification

SWS considers net personal optimism scores of +30 and above as “very high”; +20 to +29 as “high”; +10 to +19 “fair”; +1 to +9, “mediocre”; zero to -9, “low”; and -10 and below as “very low.”

For net optimism about the economy and net gainers/losers, scores of -30 and below are considered “very low”; -20 to -29 “low”; -10 to -19, “mediocre”; and zero to -9, “fair.”

Scores of +1 to +9 are considered “high,” while results of at least +10 are “very high.”

Net personal optimism

SWS said the five-point improvement in net personal optimism included a 13-point rise in Mindanao, 10 points in Visayas, and three points in Metro Manila – and a one-point dip in Balance Luzon.

In Metro Manila, net optimism score stayed “very high,” improving by three points to +38 in December, from +35 in September.

The SWS noted this was above +30 since March 2010, except in March 2014 when it dipped to a “high” +29.

Scores in Balance Luzon went down a point to +33 from +34, though it remained “very high,” SWS said. It has been above +30 since September 2011.

Net optimism in the Visayas was upgraded to a “high” +27, due to a 10-point improvement from a “fair” +17 in September. This had been above +20 in seven out of nine surveys since December 2012.

In Mindanao, net optimism stayed “very high,” with a 13-point improvement to a record-high +44 from +31 in September. This surpasses the previous record high of +35 in September 2013.

Socio-economic class

Net personal optimism scores rose across segments, at a “very high” +40 in class ABC compared to +34 in September.

It was also “very high” in the “masa” Class D, better five points in December at +36 compared to +31 in September. This had been “very high” in 12 out 19 surveys since June 2010.

Net personal optimism in Class E improved to “very high” +31 from a “high” +26 in September. This score had been “high” in nine of 12 surveys since March 2012, and “very high” in three.


The five-point rise in net optimism about the economy included a 17-point improvement in Mindanao, a seven-point rise in Metro Manila and a two-point increase in Balance Luzon, but with a four-point dip in the Visayas.

Net optimism about the economy stayed “very high” in Mindanao, up 17 points to +29 in December from +12 in September. Of 19 surveys since June 2010, it was “very high” in 12 and “high” in seven others.

Optimism about the economy also stayed “very high” in Balance Luzon at +13 from September’s +11. This was similar to December 2013 but below +22 to +27 in August 2012-September 2013.

In Metro Manila, optimism went up to a “very high” +12, seven points better than the “high” +5 in September. SWS noted this is the highest since +22 in June 2013.

Visayas’ optimism fell to a “high” +9, from “very high” +13 in September. Of 10 surveys since August 2012, SWS said it was “very high” in seven and “high” in three.

Net optimism about the economy stayed “very high” in Class ABC at +29, the highest since +47 in November 2010. This was 15 points higher than +14 in September.

SWS said it has been “very high” since August 2012, except in June 2014 when it was a “high” +3.

Net optimism about the economy in Class D improved a grade to “very high” +13, from a “high” +9 in September. It has been “very high” in 13 out of 19 surveys since June 2010.

Among Class E, it was a “very high” +21 from +14 in September – the highest since +22 in June 2013.

Net gainers

Overall net gainers saw improvements of 14 points in Mindanao and 10 points in Balance Luzon, along with a one-point decrease in both Metro Manila and Visayas.

Net gainers stayed “very high” in Class ABC, rose by two grades in Class D to “high” from “mediocre” in September. But they slipped to “mediocre” from “fair” in Class E.

The survey used interviews with 1,800 adults, with sampling error margins of ±2% for national percentages; ±6% each for Metro Manila, Balance Luzon, and Mindanao; and ±3% for the Visayas.

(Source: Joel Locsin/LBG, GMA News)

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