HKU POP releases the first Budget follow-up survey and the PSIBack

 

Press Release on March 5, 2019

| Detailed Findings (Budget Feature Page) |

| Detailed Findings (Public Sentiment Index Feature Page) |

Contact Information

Date of survey

:

28/2-1/3/2019

Survey method

:

Random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers (including landline and mobile numbers)

Target population

:

Cantonese-speaking Hong Kong residents aged 18 or above

Sample size[1]

:

512

Effective response rate[2]

:

67.8%

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 +/-2.2 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.


First Budget Follow-up Survey

Background

Since 1998, the Public Opinion Programme (POP) at The University of Hong Kong has been conducting Budget instant surveys every year. Starting 2008, we split up previous years’ instant surveys into instant surveys and first follow-up surveys. As of now, we measure people’s overall appraisal of the Budget, rating of the Budget and FS’s popularity in the instant surveys. A day later, the first follow-up surveys would be started to study any change in people’s satisfaction of the Budget, their satisfaction with the government’s strategy in monetary arrangement and other relevant issues.

Latest Figures

Results of the first Budget follow-up surveys of 2017 to 2019 together with their corresponding instant polls are tabulated below:

Instant survey[5]

First follow-up survey

Change

2019

Date of survey

27/2/2019

28/2-1/3/2019

--

Sample size

561

512

--

Response rate

78.2%

67.8%

--

Appraisal of Budget: Satisfaction rate[6]

23%

24+/-4%

+1%

Appraisal of Budget: Dissatisfaction rate[6]

39%

50+/-4%

+11%[7]

Net satisfaction rate

-16%

-26+/-7%

-9%

Mean value[6]

2.7

2.5+/-0.1

-0.1

Satisfaction rating of Budget

47.1

43.1+/-2.2

-4.0[7]

2018

Date of survey

28/2/2018

1-2/3/2018

--

Sample size

551

507

--

Response rate

67.5%

62.6%

--

Appraisal of Budget: Satisfaction rate[6]

26%

31%

+5%[7]

Appraisal of Budget: Dissatisfaction rate[6]

41%

54%

+13%[7]

Net satisfaction rate

-14%

-23%

-9%[7]

Mean value[6]

2.7

2.5

-0.2[7]

Satisfaction rating of Budget

48.2

42.8

-5.4[7]

2017

Date of survey

22/2/2017

23-24/2/2017

--

Sample size

502

506

--

Response rate

64.4%

70.4%

--

Appraisal of Budget: Satisfaction rate[6]

33%

26%

-7%[7]

Appraisal of Budget: Dissatisfaction rate[6]

18%

27%

+9%[7]

Net satisfaction rate

15%

0%

-15%[7]

Mean value[6]

3.2

2.9

-0.3[7]

Satisfaction rating of Budget

55.7

52.6

-3.1[7]

[5] Questions in instant surveys would exclude respondents who had not heard of / did not have any knowledge of the Budget. Figures in the table are subsample sizes.

[6] Collapsed from a 5-point scale. The mean value is calculated by quantifying all individual responses into 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 marks according to their degree of positive level, where 1 is the lowest and 5 the highest, and then calculate the sample mean.

[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.


Our first Budget follow-up survey reveals that 24% of the respondents were satisfied with the Budget and 50% were dissatisfied, thus net satisfaction stands at negative 26 percentage points. The mean score is 2.5, which is between “half-half” and “quite dissatisfied” in general. The average rating registered for the Budget was 43.1 marks.

With respect to people’s satisfaction with the government’s strategy in monetary arrangement and other relevant issues, the figures are summarized below:

Date of survey

Sample size

Government’s strategy in
monetary arrangement[8]

Perceived the tax system in Hong Kong to be … [9]

Perceived the distribution of wealth in Hong Kong to be …[9]

Satisfaction rate

Dis-
satisfaction rate

Net satisfaction rate

Mean value

Fair

Unfair

Reasonable

Un-
reasonable

28/2-1/3/19

512

25+/-4%[10]

56+/-4%

-31+/-7%[10]

2.4+/-0.1[10]

59+/-4%

31+/-4%

23+/-4%

66+/-4%

1-2/3/18

507

32%

50%[10]

-18%[10]

2.6[10]

56%

32%

26%[10]

67%

23-24/2/17

506

32%[10]

32%

0%

2.9

58%

28%

20%[10]

68%[10]

25-26/2/16

514

37%

34%

3%

2.9

58%

28%

30%

57%

26-27/2/15

520

36%[10]

31%[10]

5%[10]

3.0[10]

62%[10]

28%[10]

30%[10]

56%[10]

27-28/2/14

516

27%

38%

-11%

2.8

52%

35%

24%[10]

64%

28/2-1/3/13

520

30%

42%

-12%

2.8

51%[10]

37%[10]

19%

67%

2-3/2/12

504

33%[10]

43%[10]

-10%[10]

2.8[10]

56%[10]

32%[10]

20%

70%

24-25/2/11

515

21%[10]

52%[10]

-31%[10]

2.5[10]

51%[10]

39%[10]

16%[10]

74%[10]

25-27/2/10

517

34%

30%

4%[10]

3.0

60%

31%

27%

62%

26/2/09

525

30%[10]

34%[10]

-4%[10]

2.9[10]

64%

29%[10]

29%[10]

62%[10]

28/2/08

525

60%[10]

12%

48%[10]

3.6

67%

22%[10]

42%[10]

45%[10]

28/2/07

532-1,018

49%[10]

10%[10]

39%[10]

3.5[10]

63%[10]

28%[10]

34%

52%

22/2/06

599-1,026

36%[10]

15%

21%[10]

3.3

55%[10]

34%[10]

32%

55%[10]

16/3/05

1,041

29%[10]

15%[10]

14%[10]

3.2[10]

59%

27%[10]

29%[10]

51%[10]

10/3/04

1,023

18%[10]

29%[10]

-12%[10]

2.8[10]

58%[10]

31%

22%

62%

5/3/03

1,047

12%[10]

45%[10]

-33%[10]

2.4[10]

51%[10]

33%[10]

19%[10]

60%[10]

6/3/02

1,041

26%[10]

21%[10]

5%[10]

3.0[10]

55%

29%

25%

52%

7-8/3/01

406

45%[10]

14%[10]

32%[10]

3.4[10]

--

--

--

--

8/3/00

856

60%[10]

9%[10]

51%[10]

3.6[10]

--

--

--

--

18/2/98

804

42%

13%

29%

3.4

--

--

--

--

[8] Collapsed from a 5-point scale. The mean value is calculated by quantifying all individual responses into 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 marks according to their degree of positive level, where 1 is the lowest and 5 the highest, and then calculate the sample mean.

[9] Collapsed from a 4-point scale.

[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.


Latest results revealed that 25% were satisfied with the government’s strategy in monetary arrangement, whereas 56% were dissatisfied, thus net satisfaction stands at negative 31 percentage points, and mean value at 2.4, which is between “half-half” and “quite dissatisfied” in general. With respect to Hong Kong’s tax system, 59% considered it fair, whilst 31% thought it was unfair. Last of all, 23% perceived the distribution of wealth in Hong Kong reasonable, as contrast to 66% who regarded it unreasonable.

Public Sentiment Index

Background

The Public Sentiment Index (PSI) compiled by POP aims at quantifying Hong Kong people’s sentiments, in order to explain and predict the likelihood of collective behaviour. PSI comprises 2 components: one being Government Appraisal (GA) Score and the other being Society Appraisal (SA) Score. GA refers to people’s appraisal of society’s governance while SA refers to people’s appraisal of the social environment. Both GA and SA scores are compiled from a respective of 4 and 6 opinion survey figures. All PSI, GA and SA scores range between 0 to 200, with 100 meaning normal, the grading reference of the scores are shown below. For methodological detailed please refer to the HKU POP Site at http://hkupop.hku.hk.

At the end of June 2012, before the 15th anniversary of the handover of Hong Kong, POP officially released a PSI analysis with figures dating back to 1992, spanning over 20 years. Moreover, the frequency of the study was set at twice a month. Currently, the cut-off dates of all PSI analyses are set at the Sundays proceeding every 15th and last day of month. The first analysis of each month would be released through the POP Site at the Thursday following the cut-off date, while the second analysis would be released at the first Tuesday of the following month through the POP Site and press release.

Latest Figures of PSI

The PSI released by POP today shows that as of February 24, 2019, the latest Public Sentiment Index (PSI) is 97.9, up 3.1 from early February. As for the Government Appraisal (GA) and Society Appraisal (SA), the scores are 96.9 and 92.1, up by 3.0 and 2.6 respectively. The chart of PSI, GA and SA are shown below:

Latest figure

Public Sentiment Index
(PSI): 97.9 (+3.1)

Government Appraisal
(GA): 96.9 (+3.0)

Society Appraisal
(SA): 92.1 (+2.6)


Recent values of PSI, GA, SA and 10 fundamental figures are tabulated as follows:

Release date

13/12/18

2/1/19

17/1/19

4/2/19

14/2/19

5/3/19

Latest change

Cut-off date

9/12/18

30/12/18

13/1/19

27/1/19

10/2/19

24/2/19

--

Public Sentiment Index (PSI)

100.5

111.3

108.5

93.9

94.8

97.9

+3.1

Government Appraisal (GA)

99.0

107.2

102.3

92.4

93.9

96.9

+3.0

Rating of CE

50.2

56.4

50.9

45.5

47.4

50.0

+2.6

Net approval rate of CE

-7%

10%

-11%

-20%

-14%

-7%

+6%

Mean value of people’s satisfaction with SARG [11]

2.7[12]

3.0

3.0[12]

2.5

2.5[12]

2.6

+0.1

Mean value of people’s trust in SARG[11]

3.0[12]

3.0[12]

3.0[12]

3.0

3.0[12]

3.0[12]

--

Society Appraisal (SA)

94.8[12]

105.8

105.8[12]

89.5

89.5[12]

92.1

+2.6

People’s satisfaction with political condition [11]

2.2[12]

2.4

2.4[12]

2.2

2.2[12]

2.2

--

Weighting index of political condition

0.31[12]

0.30

0.30[12]

0.30[12]

0.30[12]

0.30[12]

--

People’s satisfaction with economic condition [11]

2.9[12]

3.0

3.0[12]

2.8

2.8[12]

2.9

+0.1

Weighting index of economic condition

0.34[12]

0.34

0.34[12]

0.34[12]

0.34[12]

0.34[12]

--

People’s satisfaction with livelihood condition [11]

2.5[12]

2.7

2.7[12]

2.4

2.4[12]

2.4

--

Weighting index of livelihood condition

0.35[12]

0.35

0.35[12]

0.35[12]

0.35[12]

0.35[12]

--

[11] From October to December 2018, POP conducted tests on the wordings used in different rating scales. Figures in the table are the combined results. Please visit the POP Site for details.

[12] POP will adopt the latest published figures when there are no respective updates.


As for the meaning of the score values, please refer to the following:

Score value

Percentile

Score value

Percentile

140-200

Highest 1%

0-60

Lowest 1%

125

Highest 5%

75

Lowest 5%

120

Highest 10%

80

Lowest 10%

110

Highest 25%

90

Lowest 25%

100 being normal level, meaning half above half below


The latest PSI of 97.9 can be considered as among the worst 44% across the past 20 years or so, while the GA and SA scores of 96.9 and 92.1 can be considered as among the worst 42% and 30% respectively.

Commentary

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

Our survey showed that people’s instant reaction to this year’s Budget in the first night can be considered negative, with a net satisfaction of negative 16 percentage points. As for the rating of the Budget, this year’s instant survey gave a rating of 47.1 marks. After one to two days of media coverage, the reaction gets more negative. The latest satisfaction rate stands at 24%, dissatisfaction rate 50%, net satisfaction rate goes down by 9 percentage points to negative 26, a record low in the same series since 2011. Its satisfaction rating also plunges by 4.0 marks to 43.1. This shows people’s response has become more negative after digesting some information and discussions on the Budget. How people’s reaction will change after knowing even more about the Budget remains to be revealed by our second follow-up survey to be conducted weeks later. In terms of macroscopic appraisal of Hong Kong’s economic condition, 59% consider Hong Kong’s tax system fair, but 66% consider the distribution of wealth unreasonable. Meanwhile, only 25% are satisfied with the government’s strategy in monetary arrangement, 56% are dissatisfied, giving a net satisfaction rate of negative 31 percentage points, representing a significant drop of 13 percentage points compared to last year, also a record low since 2011.

As for the Public Sentiment Index (PSI), the latest PSI stands at 97.9, up by 3.1 points from early February. This time both component scores of PSI have increased. Specifically, the Government Appraisal (GA) Score that reflects people’s appraisal of society’s governance goes up by 3.0 points to 96.9, whereas the Society Appraisal (SA) Score that reflects people’s appraisal of the social environment also increases by 2.6 points to 92.1. As for the reasons affecting the ups and downs of these figures, we leave it to our readers to form their own judgment using detailed records displayed in our “Opinion Daily”.

Future Release (Tentative)

  • March 12, 2019 (Tuesday) 12pm to 2pm: Popularity of CE and Principal Officials

  • Reference Materials on Survey on PSI