The number of Filipinos who expect their lives to get better in the next 12 months has hit a record high, according to a new survey of the Social Weather Stations (SWS).
The survey, conducted from March 20 to 23, showed 42 percent of Filipinos expect their personal quality of life to improve in the next 12 months while only 5 percent expect it to get worse, for a net personal optimism score of +37 (42 percent optimists minus five percent pessimists), which the SWS said is “very high.”
The previous record high was +36 recorded in June 2010, the month President Benigno Aquino 3rd started his term. The record rating is the highest since March 1987 or over a year since Corazon Aquino–the incumbent President’s mother–took power.
Last December, net personal optimism was at +35 (41 percent optimists minus 6 percent pessimists).
SWS polled 1,200 adults nationwide with the survey having a margin of error of three points for national percentages, and six points each for Metro Manila, rest of Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
Survey respondents were not asked why they were optimistic or pessimistic, but whether their lives improved over the past 12 months and how they feel about the country’s economy.
The first-quarter survey showed 32 percent felt their lives improved (gainers) while 26 percent said they worsened (losers) in the last 12 months. This meant a “high” +6 net gainers score, or the difference between gainers and losers.
SWS said this was the highest in 28 years since March 1987, when it was a record-high +11. It is also an increase of seven points from the “fair” -1 (29 percent gainers minus 30 percent losers) in December 2014.
SWS conducted its first “quality of life” survey in April 1984 during the time of President Ferdinand Marcos. The survey was conducted eight months after the assassination of former senator Benigno Aquino Jr. and about the time when the peso was devalued, foreign currency use was restricted and panic-buying was rampant amid civil unrest that followed the infamous political killing of the incumbent President’s father.