The public’s attitudes of the economy is relatively bleak across many nations during COVID-19 pandemic

Among many nations, the public’s attitudes in regards to the economy have been relatively bleak as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a recent survey.

In the summer of 2020, a team of researchers at Pew Research Center conducted a survey of 14 European nations, the Asia-Pacific region, and North America.

As detailed in the findings, an overwhelming majority of respondents, or 68 percent, across many nations, say the current economic situation is not good. Only 31 percent of respondents praised the economy of their nations included in the survey.

“In Europe, attitudes are mixed,” the report states. “Generally, Northern Europeans surveyed have more positive assessments, with a majority of Danes, Swedes and Dutch rating their country’s economic condition positively.”

“Germans are split (51% good, 47% bad). In the rest of the European countries surveyed – Belgium, the UK, France, Spain and Italy – large majorities rate economic conditions negatively,” the co-authors also stated.

In most countries surveyed, majorities think the economy is doing poorly

In comparison to 2019, the negative evaluations of the economy across many nations increased substantially during 2020. Canada, the United Kingdom, the U.S., and Australia, were among the nations with the most devastating assessments of the economy.

“Sweden, which has not imposed strict shutdown measures during the COVID-19 outbreak, saw the smallest increase in negative assessments of the economy,” the co-authors suggested in their report.

“But even there, GDP is expected to contract by roughly 5% in 2020, and Swedes are 11 percentage points more likely to think economic conditions in their country are poor than in 2019.”

Amid growing concern of worsening conditions, some respondents side with the belief that the economic situation could worsen over the next year.

“In many of the countries surveyed, those who say their country’s current economy is in bad shape are more likely than those who say the economy is doing well to believe that the economy will worsen in the next 12 months,” the report also suggests.

“In South Korea, for example, 68% of those who say the current economy is bad also say they expect it to get worse in the coming year, compared with just 22% among those who say the current economy is good.”

Pew Research Center is a US-based nonpartisan think tank devoted to public opinion polling, demographic analysis, and social science research.

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