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Australians amongst least confident in the world about 2020

This special Roy Morgan survey was conducted with a representative cross-section of 1,043 Australians and thousands of respondents from 46 other countries world-wide late in 2019. Respondents in all 47 countries world-wide were asked “Do you think that 2020 will be better, worse, or the same as 2019?” *MYEFO – Mid-Year Economic & Fiscal Outlook which is regarded as the Mid-Year Budget update.
A special Roy Morgan survey conducted in Australia in conjunction with the Gallup International Association survey in 47 countries world-wide finds that Australia is one of the least confident countries in the world about 2020.

Only 12% of Australians (down 32% points on a year ago) expect 2020 will be a ‘better year’ than 2019 which is equal 43rd with South Korea of the 47 countries surveyed. Australia is more positive about 2020 than only three countries including Italy (11%), Jordan (7%) and Lebanon (5%).

Australia’s traditional allies the USA & UK fare significantly better with their views of 2020. A plurality of 43% of Americans says 2020 will be better than 2019 while a third of Britons (33%) expect 2020 will be better.

There are 10 countries for which a majority of respondents expect 2020 will be a ‘better’ year than 2019 led by Nigeria (73%), Peru and Albania (both 70%), Kazakhstan (67%), Armenia (62%), Kosovo and India (both 56%), Vietnam and Mexico (both 55%) and Azerbaijan (51%).

Conversely a thirty-year high of 40% of Australians (up 26% points from a year ago) expect 2020 will be a ‘worse year’ than 2019. Only six countries are more negative about the year ahead of us including Lebanon (76%), Hong Kong (68%), Jordan (60%), Italy (59%), Bosnia-Herzegovina (50%) and Thailand (41%).

Further details about the Australian results are available for review here.

Roy Morgan CEO Michele Levine explains that though Australia has had a tough start to the year with devastating bushfires in much of the country there is plenty to look forward to as the bushfires recede and Australia goes back to work this week: “A recent Roy Morgan survey of the effect of the bushfires that have swept through Australia in recent weeks on businesses shows that nearly three-quarters (74%) of Australian businesses haven’t been affected by the bushfires at all.

“Australia is most definitely ‘Open for Business’ now and looking forward throughout 2020. Not only is the recovery from the bushfires already beginning but in recent months the two-year downturn in the Australian property market has reversed and housing prices are again increasing while interest rates remain at record lows for the foreseeable future.

“The Federal Government reaffirmed in the ‘MYEFO*’ released in December that the economy is on track to deliver Australia’s first Federal Budget surplus this year since 2007/08 before the Global Financial Crisis and a promised Budget Surplus will allow for additional income tax cuts in this year’s Budget.

“Putting the Australian situation in a global context means considering the situation in other countries with lower than average views of the year ahead. Lebanon faces 2020 with the country in an economic meltdown as citizens are restricted to withdrawing a maximum of $1,000 per week from their banks accounts.

“In Italy the Government of Giuseppe Conte is on the verge of collapse as the governing coalition loses support and the euro-sceptic opposition led by Matteo Salvini appears certain to regain power.

“In Hong Kong the long-running democracy protests have created significant uncertainty about the political future of the city-state and new worries have arisen in recent weeks driven by the coronavirus which could stunt growth in China and Hong Kong significantly in 2020.  The similarities to the SARS outbreak of 2002-03 which killed several hundred in China and significantly curtailed economic growth that year are striking.”

Finding 8248 – This special Roy Morgan survey was conducted with a representative cross-section of 1,043 Australians and thousands of respondents from 46 other countries world-wide late in 2019. Respondents in all 47 countries world-wide were asked “Do you think that 2020 will be better, worse, or the same as 2019?” *MYEFO – Mid-Year Economic & Fiscal Outlook which is regarded as the Mid-Year Budget update.

1. Next Year - Better or Worse Than This Year

Respondents were asked: "As far as you're concerned, do you think next year will be better or worse than this year?"

Nigeria is the most optimistic with nearly three-quarters (73%) of respondents expecting 2020 to be a better year than 2019, closely followed by Peru and Albania (both 70%), Kazakhstan (67%), Armenia (62%), Kosovo and India (both 56%), Vietnam and Mexico (both 55%) and Azerbaijan (51%). These are the only 10 countries in which a majority of respondents expect 2020 to be a better year than 2019.

In five countries a majority expect 2020 will be a worse year than 2019 led by Lebanon (76%), Hong Kong (68%), Jordan (60%), Italy (59%) and their neighbours across the Adriatic Sea in Bosnia & Herzegovina (50%).

A record low 12% of Australians believe 2020 will be a better year than 2019, nearly half (48%) think it will be the same or don’t know and 40% think it will be worse.

Australia’s traditional allies the USA & UK fare significantly better with their views of 2020. A plurality of 43% of Americans expect 2020 will be better than 2019 compared to only 20% that expect 2020 will be worse while a third of Britons (33%) expect 2020 will be better which is slightly more than the 30% who say it will be worse.

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Roy Morgan is the largest independent Australian research company, with offices throughout Australia, as well as in Indonesia, the United States and the United Kingdom. A full service research organisation specialising in omnibus and syndicated data, Roy Morgan has over 70 years’ experience in collecting objective, independent information on consumers.

Margin of Error

The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. Margin of error gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size

Percentage Estimate

40%-60%

25% or 75%

10% or 90%

5% or 95%

1,000

±3.0

±2.7

±1.9

±1.3

5,000

±1.4

±1.2

±0.8

±0.6

7,500

±1.1

±1.0

±0.7

±0.5

10,000

±1.0

±0.9

±0.6

±0.4

20,000

±0.7

±0.6

±0.4

±0.3

50,000

±0.4

±0.4

±0.3

±0.2