HKU POP releases popularity figures of CE and principal officialsBack

 

Press Release on January 15, 2019

| Detailed Findings (Rating of Chief Executive Carrie Lam) | Detailed Findings (Popularity of Principal Officials) |

Contact Information

Date of survey

:

7-11/1/2019

Survey method

:

Random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers

Target population

:

Cantonese-speaking Hong Kong residents aged 18 or above

Sample size[1]

:

1,007

Effective response rate[2]

:

55.6%

Sampling error[3]

:

Sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4%, that of net values not more than +/-7% and that of ratings not more than +/-2.3 at 95% confidence level

Weighting method[4]

:

Rim-weighted according to figures provided by the Census and Statistics Department. The gender-age distribution of the Hong Kong population came from “Mid-year population for 2017”, while the educational attainment (highest level attended) distribution and economic activity status distribution came from “Women and Men in Hong Kong - Key Statistics (2018 Edition)”.

[1] Starting from April 2018, POP revised the landline and mobile sample ratio to 2 to 1. The figures released today by POP have already incorporated landline and mobile samples.

[2] Before September 2017, “overall response rate” was used to report surveys’ contact information. Starting from September 2017, “effective response rate” was used. In July 2018, POP further revised the calculation of effective response rate. Thus, the response rates before and after the change cannot be directly compared.

[3] All error figures in this release are calculated at 95% confidence level. “95% confidence level” means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times with different random samples, we would expect 95 times having the population parameter within the respective error margins calculated. Because of sampling errors, when quoting percentages, journalists should refrain from reporting decimal places, whereas one decimal place can be used when quoting rating figures.

[4] In the past, the mobile sample would be rim-weighted according to the basic Public Sentiment Index (PSI) figures collected in the landline sample. In July 2018, POP further refined the weighting method. The landline sample and the mobile sample would no longer be processed separately. The mobile sample would also no longer be adjusted using the basic PSI figures collected in the landline sample. The overall effect is that the importance of the mobile sample would be increased.


Latest Figures

To facilitate academic study and rational discussion, the Public Opinion Programme (POP) of The University of Hong Kong today released via the “HKU POP Site” (http://hkupop.hku.hk) the raw data and related respondents’ demographics of the latest rating survey of CE Carrie Lam, together with those of regular rating surveys of former CEs CH Tung, Donald Tsang and CY Leung released earlier, for public examination. Please follow normal academic standards when using or citing such data.

Recent popularity figures of CE Carrie Lam are summarized as follows:

Date of survey

22-24/10/18

1-6/11/18

15-19/11/18

3-6/12/18

17-20/12/18

7-11/1/19

Latest change

Sample size

1,006

1,002

1,000

1,005

1,000

1,007

--

Response rate

63.4%

58.9%

67.9%

54.6%

60.6%

55.6%

--

Latest findings

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding & error

--

Rating of CE Carrie Lam

51.7[5]

52.3

50.2

50.2

56.4[5]

50.9+/-1.7

-5.5[5]

Vote of confidence in CE Carrie Lam

41%

40%

40%

39%

49%[5]

37+/-3%

-12%[5]

Vote of no confidence in CE Carrie Lam

42%[5]

45%

44%

47%

39%[5]

48+/-3%

+9%[5]

Net approval rate

-1%

-5%

-4%

-7%

10%[5]

-11+/-6%

-21%[5]

[5] Such changes have gone beyond the sampling errors at 95% confidence level, meaning that they are statistically significant prima facie. However, whether numerical differences are statistically significant is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful, and different weighting methods could have been applied in different surveys.


Recent popularity figures of the three Secretaries of Departments under the accountability system are summarized below:

Date of survey

6-9/8/18

3-6/9/18

2-4/10/18

1-6/11/18

3-6/12/18

7-11/1/19

Latest change

Sample size[6]

719-747

551-565

535-539

541-558

506-518

538-576

--

Response rate

51.2%

50.4%

46.8%

58.9%

54.6%

55.6%

--

Latest findings

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding & error

--

Rating of CS Matthew Cheung

50.9

51.5

48.0[7]

47.8

44.8

47.4+/-2.1

+2.6

Vote of confidence in
CS Matthew Cheung

31%

33%

28%

28%

28%

26+/-4%

-2%

Vote of no confidence in
CS Matthew Cheung

21%

24%

23%

28%

27%

24+/-4%

-3%

Net approval rate

10%

9%

6%

1%

1%

2+/-6%

+1%

Rating of FS Paul Chan

39.5

38.9

41.3

37.1[7]

37.6

40.2+/-2.3

+2.6

Vote of confidence in FS Paul Chan

18%

20%

23%

21%

18%

22+/-4%

+4%

Vote of no confidence in FS Paul Chan

49%

48%

43%

50%[7]

49%

47+/-4%

-2%

Net approval rate

-31%

-29%

-19%

-29%[7]

-31%

-25+/-7%

+7%

Rating of SJ Teresa Cheng

40.3

41.2

39.2

36.7

37.1

30.4+/-2.3

-6.7[7]

Vote of confidence in SJ Teresa Cheng

17%

21%

18%

16%

13%

11+/-3%

-1%

Vote of no confidence in SJ Teresa Cheng

36%

32%

34%

38%

39%

59+/-4%

+20%[7]

Net approval rate

-19%

-11%

-17%

-23%

-27%

-48+/-6%

-22%[7]

[6] The frequency of this series of questions is different from that of CE popularity ratings. Comparisons, if made, should be synchronized using the same intervals. These questions only use sub-samples of the surveys concerned; the sample size for each question also varies.

[7] Such changes have gone beyond the sampling errors at 95% confidence level, meaning that they are statistically significant prima facie. However, whether numerical differences are statistically significant is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful, and different weighting methods could have been applied in different surveys.


Latest popularity figures of Directors of Bureaux under the accountability system are summarized below, in descending order of net approval rates [8]:

Date of survey

2-4/10/18

1-6/11/18

3-6/12/18

7-11/1/19

Latest change

Sample size[9]

578-630

575-621

583-623

561-630

--

Response rate

46.8%

58.9%

54.6%

55.6%

--

Latest findings

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding & error

--

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan

44%[10]

46%

47%

45+/-4%

-2%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan

14%[10]

10%

12%

10+/-2%

-2%

Net approval rate

30%[10]

36%

34%

34+/-5%

--

Vote of confidence in Secretary for the Civil Service Joshua Law

36%

37%

34%

37+/-4%

+2%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for the Civil Service Joshua Law

10%

11%

12%

8+/-2%

-4%[10]

Net approval rate

26%

25%

22%

29+/-5%

+6%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Labour and Welfare Law Chi-kwong

41%

42%

39%

37+/-4%

-2%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Labour and Welfare Law Chi-kwong

16%[10]

17%

17%

14+/-3%

-3%

Net approval rate

25%[10]

25%

22%

22+/-6%

--

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau

37%

39%

39%

33+/-4%

-6%[10]

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau

11%

13%

14%

13+/-3%

--

Net approval rate

27%

26%

25%

20+/-5%

-6%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Development Michael Wong

19%

24%

21%

19+/-3%

-1%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Development Michael Wong

12%

19%[10]

19%

13+/-3%

-6%[10]

Net approval rate

7%

4%

2%

6+/-5%

+4%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury James Lau

22%

21%

19%

17+/-3%

-3%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury James Lau

8%

10%

10%

11+/-3%

+1%

Net approval rate

15%

10%

9%

6+/-4%

-3%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Security John Lee

34%

31%

31%

27+/-4%

-5%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Security John Lee

19%

25%[10]

19%[10]

22+/-3%

+2%

Net approval rate

15%

6%[10]

12%

5+/-6%

-7%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing

33%

29%

29%

27+/-4%

-2%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing

20%

30%[10]

23%[10]

25+/-4%

+2%

Net approval rate

14%

-1%[10]

6%

2+/-6%

-4%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Patrick Nip

21%

21%

18%

16+/-3%

-3%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Patrick Nip

16%

20%

18%

14+/-3%

-3%

Net approval rate

5%

1%

1%

2+/-5%

+1%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Innovation and Technology Nicholas Yang

22%

23%

22%

17+/-3%

-5%[10]

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Innovation and Technology Nicholas Yang

24%

30%[10]

29%

25+/-4%

-4%

Net approval rate

-2%

-7%

-7%

-7+/-5%

-1%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung

31%

25%[10]

23%

19+/-3%

-3%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung

26%

37%[10]

39%

33+/-4%

-5%[10]

Net approval rate

5%

-13%[10]

-16%

-14+/-6%

+2%

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan

26%

25%

21%

21+/-3%

--

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan

38%

40%

40%

41+/-4%

+1%

Net approval rate

-12%

-15%

-19%

-19+/-6%

--

Vote of confidence in Secretary for Home Affairs Lau Kong-wah

24%

24%

21%

19+/-3%

-2%

Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Home Affairs Lau Kong-wah

40%

39%

42%

42+/-4%

+1%

Net approval rate

-16%

-16%

-21%

-23+/-6%

-2%

[8] If the rounded figures are the same, numbers after the decimal point will be considered.

[9] The frequency of this series of questions is different from that of CE popularity ratings. Comparisons, if made, should be synchronized using the same intervals. These questions only use sub-samples of the surveys concerned; the sample size for each question also varies.

[10] Such changes have gone beyond the sampling errors at 95% confidence level, meaning that they are statistically significant prima facie. However, whether numerical differences are statistically significant is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful, and different weighting methods could have been applied in different surveys.


The latest survey showed that CE Carrie Lam scored 50.9 marks, and 37% supported her as CE, her net approval rate is negative 11 percentage points. Meanwhile, the corresponding ratings of CS Matthew Cheung, FS Paul Chan and SJ Teresa Cheng were 47.4, 40.2 and 30.4 marks, while 26%, 22% and 11% would vote for their reappointments correspondingly. Their net approval rates are positive 2, negative 25 and negative 48 percentage points respectively.

As for the Directors of Bureaux, according to the net approval rates, results revealed that the top position goes to Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan, attaining positive 34 percentage points. The 2nd to 4th places belong to Secretary for the Civil Service Joshua Law, Secretary for Labour and Welfare Law Chi-kwong and Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau with net approval rates of positive 29, positive 22 and positive 20 percentage points respectively. Secretary for Development Michael Wong, Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury James Lau, Secretary for Security John Lee, Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing, Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Patrick Nip, Secretary for Innovation and Technology Nicholas Yang, Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung, Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan and Secretary for Home Affairs Lau Kong-wah ranked 5th to 13th, their corresponding net approval rates are positive 6, positive 6, positive 5, positive 2, positive 2, negative 7, negative 14, negative 19 and negative 23 percentage points. In other words, no Director scored a net approval rate of over 50%.

Opinion Daily

In 2007, POP started collaborating with Wisers Information Limited whereby Wisers supplies to POP a record of significant events of that day according to the research method designed by POP. These daily entries would then be uploaded to “Opinion Daily” after they are verified by POP.

For some of the polling items covered in this press release, the previous survey was conducted from 17 to 20 December, 2018 while this survey was conducted from 7 to 11 January, 2019. During this period, herewith the significant events selected from counting newspaper headlines and commentaries on a daily basis and covered by at least 25% of the local newspaper articles. Readers can make their own judgment if these significant events have any impacts to different polling figures.

10/1/19

The Government will raise the eligible age for elderly CSSA from 60 to 65, which leads to criticisms.

9/1/19

The National Anthem Bill will be tabled in the Legislative Council on January 23.

8/1/19

The Government releases the report submitted by the Independent Review Committee on Hong Kong’s Franchised Bus Service.

31/12/18

The Task Force on Land Supply submits its report to the government.

28/12/18

The government will release four residential plots next quarter.

26/12/18

Teresa Cheng claims it is unnecessary to seek external legal advice on the UGL case.

21/12/18

The government announces an increase in the proportion of public housing in the “Long Term Housing Strategy” annual report.

17/12/18

Chief Executive Carrie Lam pays a duty visit to Beijing.


Online Opinion Analysis

In 2017, POP started collaborating with uMax Data Technology Limited to conduct “Online Opinion Analysis”. uMax Data would provide technical support concerning social big data to track posts in Facebook pages and various major forums in Hong Kong that mentioned specific political figures or organizations. When public opinion changes very significantly, POP will summarize the popular online posts about the specific political figures or organizations between the two surveys and compile a list of related events. Readers could make their own judgment if the events listed have impact on the related public opinion figures.

Since the latest survey findings reveal that the net approval rate of CE Carrie Lam has changed significantly compared to the figure recorded in the last survey, POP conducted “Online Opinion Analysis” to identify the top ten most discussed issues on the internet. The list of most discussed items after eliminating duplications is as follows:

Carrie Lam said it was hard for the Transport Fare Subsidy Scheme to spot parallel traders.

Media reported that Lantau Tomorrow Vision would spend much of fiscal reserve.

A person expressed a new year wish to have Carrie Lam step down.

Netizens discussed Carrie Lam’s raising of the eligible age for elderly CSSA to 65.

Carrie Lam responded to Legislative Councillors that it was them who approved the raising of the eligible age for elderly CSSA to 65.

Carrie Lam said she did not understand why a foreign government could impose conditions on Hong Kong.

The Task Force on Land Supply submits its report to Carrie Lam.


The results show that online public opinion had been discussing various issues. Whether or not these items could sufficiently explain the changes in CE popularity ratings, readers could form their own judgment.

Commentary

Note: The following commentary was written by Research Manager of POP, Frank Lee.

Our latest survey shows that the popularity figures of CE Carrie Lam have dropped dramatically after a rebound three weeks ago. Her popularity rating drops by 5.5 to 50.9 marks. Her latest approval rate is 37%, disapproval rate 48%, giving a net popularity of negative 11 percentage points, also a significant decrease of 21 percentage points compared to three weeks ago, registering a new record low since she took office.

As for the Secretaries of Departments, the latest support rating of CS Matthew Cheung is 47.4 marks, approval rate 26%, disapproval rate 24%, giving a net popularity of positive 2 percentage points. The latest support rating of FS Paul Chan is 40.2 marks, approval rate 22%, disapproval rate 47%, thus a net popularity of negative 25 percentage points. As for SJ Teresa Cheng, her support rating drops significantly by 6.7 to 30.4 marks, approval rate 11%, disapproval rate 59%, giving a net popularity of negative 48 percentage points, a significant decrease of 22 percentage points. Both her support rating and net approval rate register new record lows since she took office. In terms of popularity rating and net approval rate, Matthew Cheung continues to be the most popular Secretary of Department.

As for the Directors of Bureaux, compared to one month ago, the net approval rates of 4 among 13 Directors have gone up, 6 have gone down while 3 remained unchanged, but none of the changes have gone beyond sampling errors. The latest net approval rates of Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau, Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury James Lau and Secretary for Security John Lee are at their record lows since they took office. Among all the Directors, Secretary for Innovation and Technology Nicholas Yang, Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung, Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan and Secretary for Home Affairs Lau Kong-wah register negative popularities, at negative 7, negative 14, negative 19 and negative 23 percentage points respectively. Sophia Chan continues to be the most popular Director, with a net approval rate of positive 34 percentage points.

According to POP’s standard, no one falls under the category of “ideal” or “successful” performer. The performance of Sophia Chan, Carrie Lam, Law Chi-kwong, Wong Kam-sing, Matthew Cheung, Paul Chan, Frank Chan, Kevin Yeung and Lau Kong-wah can be labeled as “mediocre”. That of Joshua Law, Edward Yau, John Lee, Michael Wong, Nicholas Yang, James Lau and Patrick Nip can be labeled as “inconspicuous”. Teresa Cheng falls into the category of “depressing” performer, while no one falls into that of “disastrous”.

The following table summarizes the grading of CE Carrie Lam and the principal officials for readers’ easy reference:

“Ideal”: those with approval rates of over 66%; ranked by their approval rates shown inside brackets[11]

“Successful”: those with approval rates of over 50%; ranked by their approval rates shown inside brackets[11]

“Mediocre”: those not belonging to other 5 types; ranked by their approval rates shown inside brackets[11]

Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan Siu-chee (45%); CE Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor (37%); Secretary for Labour and Welfare Law Chi-kwong (37%); Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing (27%); CS Matthew Cheung Kin-chung (26%); FS Paul Chan Mo-po (22%); Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan Fan (21%); Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung Yun-hung (19%); Secretary for Home Affairs Lau Kong-wah (19%)

“Inconspicuous”: those with recognition rates of less than 50%; ranked by their approval rates [11]; the first figure inside bracket is approval rate while the second figure is recognition rate

Secretary for the Civil Service Joshua Law Chi-kong (37%, 45%); Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau Tang-wah (33%, 47%); Secretary for Security John Lee Ka-chiu (27%, 48%); Secretary for Development Michael Wong Wai-lun (19%, 33%); Secretary for Innovation and Technology Nicholas Yang Wei-hsiung (17%, 42%); Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury James Henry Lau Jr (17%, 28%); Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Patrick Nip Tak-kuen (16%, 30%)

“Depressing”: those with disapproval rates of over 50%; ranked by their disapproval rates shown inside brackets[11]

SJ Teresa Cheng Yeuk-wah (59%)

“Disastrous”: those with disapproval rates of over 66%; ranked by their disapproval rates shown inside brackets[11]

[11] If the rounded figures are the same, numbers after the decimal point will be considered.


Future Release (Tentative)

  • January 22, 2019 (Tuesday) 12pm to 2pm: Taiwan and Tibetan issues

  • Reference – Technical Notes of “Online Opinion Analysis”

    Technically, POP research team firstly determines and inputs related keywords to be searched on the platform provided by uMax Data. POP then selects targeted online platforms to be monitored (currently selected: Facebook and forums), and extract the top five most discussed items on each online platform, thus come up with a list of 10 items in total. By eliminating duplications in the top ten items, POP compiles a table which is included in the press release for readers’ reference.