Filipino optimism declined in the first quarter of 2017, based on the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey.
The SWS said 43 percent of those surveyed said they expect their personal quality of life to improve in the next 12 months and six percent expect it to get worse.
The result yielded a net personal optimism score of +36, classified as "very high" but nine points lower compared to the December 2016 survey's +45 score.
The December 2016 survey showed that 48 percent expect their personal quality of life to improve and only three percent expect it to get worse.
The latest survey, with 1,200 adult respondents, was conducted from March 25 to 28. It has sampling error margins of ±3% for quarterly national percentages, ±4% for Balance Luzon, and ±6% each for Metro Manila, Visayas and Mindanao.
The survey firm said the latest result is the lowest in the last five quarters, with net personal optimism scores of +40 and above.
The lowest net optimism score recorded by SWS was in September 2015 at +33.
The SWS said that in Mindanao, President Rodrigo Duterte's bailiwick, the net optimism score also saw a huge decline at +32, which is 22 points lower from December 2016's +54.
Optimism, meanwhile, plunged by 17 points in Class E or "high" +29 compared to December 2016's "very high" +46. Net personal optimism in other socioeconomic classes stayed "very high," the survey showed.
The survey also showed that fewer Filipinos or 47 percent believe the general Philippine economy will get better next year and more Filipinos, at nine percent, felt it would deteriorate. In the previous quarters, 51 percent were optimistic and only eight percent were pessimistic that the country's economy will grow.
The latest survey garnered a net optimism of "very high" +38, five points lower than the December 2016 survey.
The SWS, meanwhile, noted that optimism of Filipinos, based on its past surveys, "have been highly negative."
The March survey also showed that net optimism of the economy stayed "very high" across geographical areas and socioeconomic classes.
Meanwhile, 35 percent of the respondents said their quality of life improved while 19 percent they it worsened, yielding a net gainers score of "very high" +16, which was the same result in the December 2016 survey.
The SWS said the net gainers scores since April 1983 "had been positive" and above +10 since September 2016.
It said the latest survey saw a decline in gainers in Mindanao, but the overall score was pulled up by the increases in Visayas and Metro Manila. —ALG, GMA News