Philippine Stocks Exchange (MNS photo)

Philippine Stocks Exchange (MNS photo)

MANILA  (Mabuhay) – While Filipinos remain optimistic that their lives would improve in the next 12 months, their outlook on the economy dipped slightly in the fourth quarter of 2013, according to a new survey by pollster Social Weather Stations.

According to the SWS poll taken from Dec. 11 to 16, 41 percent of respondents believed their quality of life would likely improve in the next 12 months, while eight percent believe otherwise, for a net score of +33.

This was two points below the +35 in September but remained in “very high” territory, with the SWS noting that net personal optimism had been “very high” in eight of 15 surveys since June 2010.

Meanwhile, optimism on the economy fell nine points from a “very high” +17 in September to a “high” +8 in December.

This was due to only 30 percent of those polled believing the economy will likely get better this year and 21 percent expecting a downturn.

According to the SWS, net optimism on the economy had been “very high” since June 2011, except in three instances.

The survey used face-to-face interviews of 1,550 adults nationwide. Sampling error margins of ±2.5% for national, ±4% for the Visayas, and ±6% for Metro Manila, Balance Luzon and Mindanao percentages applied to the survey.

For net personal optimism, the SWS considers scores of +30 and above as “very high”. Those from +20 to +29 are “high”, while +10 to +19 range is considered “fair”.

Positive scores falling below this (+1 to +9) are “mediocre” while zero to -9 are considered “low” and -10 and below are “very low.”

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

Net personal optimism

Of those polled on how their lives had changed in the last 12 months, 23 percent said it had improved and 37 percent said otherwise, for a “mediocre” net gainers score of -13.

The net gainers’ score was -12 in September.

According to the SWS, a downgrade of net personal optimism was noted in Mindanao, where net personal optimism fell six points to a “high” +29.

Net personal optimism fell by seven points in the Visayas but remained “high” at +22.

In Metro Manila, the net personal optimism remained “very high” at +35, while there was a two-point upgrade in Balance Luzon to a “very high” +39.

The SWS also noted downgrades in socioeconomic classes, with a 12-point drop to a “high” +24 among Class E, and a 23-point drop to a “high” +26 among Class ABC.

But net personal optimism stayed “very high” and improved by two points to +35 among Class D or the “masa.”

Optimism on the economy

Net optimism about the economy went down to a “high” +4 in Mindanao and the Visayas, with a 12-point downgrade in Mindanao and seven-point downgrade in the Visayas.

Balance Luzon registered a 10-point drop to +13 but remained “very high,” while Metro Manila had a two-point increase to +7, considered “high.”

The SWS also noted downgrades to “high” among Class D – down eight points – and down 11 points among Class E.

It stayed “very high” among Class ABC, though eight points down from September.

The SWS recorded net gainer downgrades to “low” in Metro Manila (-22, down three points) and the Visayas (-20, down nine points).

It fell two points to -9 stayed “fair” in Balance Luzon, and stayed “mediocre” in Mindanao but improved seven points from September at -12.

Also, it stayed “high” among Class ABC, up five points to +8. But it remained “mediocre” among Class D at -14 and Class E at -18. (MNS)