POP releases popularity figures of CE and principal officials (2020-02-11)

Feb 11, 2020
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Press Release on February 11, 2020

POP releases popularity figures of CE and principal officials

Special Announcement

The predecessor of Hong Kong Public Opinion Program (HKPOP) was The Public Opinion Programme at The University of Hong Kong (HKUPOP). “POP” in this release can refer to HKPOP or its predecessor HKUPOP.

Abstract

POP successfully interviewed 1,001 Hong Kong residents by a random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers in early February. Latest results show that the popularity rating of CE Carrie Lam now stands at 20.3 marks. Her net popularity is negative 68 percentage points. Both popularity figures have not changed much from two weeks ago. As for the Secretaries of Departments, the support rating of CS Matthew Cheung is 22.9 marks and his net popularity is negative 47 percentage points, both being historical lows since he took office. The support rating of FS Paul Chan is 26.6 marks and his net popularity is negative 36 percentage points. As for SJ Teresa Cheng, her support rating is 15.9 marks and her net popularity is negative 61 percentage points, registering a significant increase of 8 percentage points. As for the Directors of Bureaux, all 13 of them register negative net approval rates. Compared to one month ago, the net approval rates of 8 among 13 Directors have gone up, 4 have gone down while 1 remains unchanged. Those of Kevin Yeung, Joshua Law and Sophia Chan have changed beyond sampling error, up by 12, 9 and down by 11 percentage points respectively. The net approval rates of Sophia Chan, Edward Yau and James Lau have registered historical lows since they took office. The effective response rate of the survey is 77.6%. The maximum sampling error of percentages is +/-4%, that of net values is +/-6% and that of ratings is +/-2.3 at 95% confidence level.

Contact Information

Date of survey : 3-6/2/2020
Survey method : Random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers
Target population : Cantonese-speaking Hong Kong residents aged 18 or above
Sample size[1] : 1,001 (including 500 landline and 501 mobile samples)
Effective response rate[2] : 77.6%
Sampling error[3] : Sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4%, that of net values not more than +/-6% and that of ratings not more than +/-2.3 at 95% conf. level
Weighting method : 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 2018”, 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]     This figure is the total sample size of the survey. Some questions may only involve a subsample, the size of which can be found in the tables below.

[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.

Latest Figures

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

Date of survey 15-21/11/19 28/11-3/12/19 13-18/12/19 3-8/1/20 16-21/1/20 3-6/2/20 Latest change
Sample size 1,008 1,014 1,046 1,011 1,004 1,001
Response rate 74.1% 63.2% 61.6% 72.0% 69.7% 77.6%
Latest findings Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding & error
Rating of CE Carrie Lam 19.7 19.7 19.6 21.5 20.8 20.3+/-1.9 -0.5
Vote of confidence in CE Carrie Lam 11% 10% 12% 14% 14% 13+/-2%
Vote of no confidence in CE Carrie Lam 82% 82% 81% 80% 80% 81+/-2% +1%
Net approval rate -72% -72% -68% -66% -66% -68+/-4% -1%

[4]     The difference between the figure and the result from the previous survey has gone beyond the sampling error at 95% confidence level, meaning that the change is statistically significant prima facie. However, whether the difference is 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 2-4/9/19 30/9-3/10/19 1-8/11/19 28/11-3/12/19 3-8/1/20 3-6/2/20 Latest change
Sample size 640-679 584-649 625-656 659-671 608-669 569-631
Response rate 69.5% 64.5% 69.4% 63.2% 72.0% 77.6%
Latest findings Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding & error
Rating of CS Matthew Cheung 32.1[5] 31.8 28.1[5] 25.6 25.3 22.9+/-2.2 -2.3
Vote of confidence in
CS Matthew Cheung
18%[5] 18% 17% 13% 14% 12+/-3% -1%
Vote of no confidence in
CS Matthew Cheung
41%[5] 42% 46% 54%[5] 54% 59+/-4% +5%
Net approval rate -23%[5] -24% -29% -40%[5] -41% -47+/-6% -6%
Rating of FS Paul Chan 28.0[5] 26.9 27.2 24.8 27.6 26.6+/-2.3 -1.0
Vote of confidence in FS Paul Chan 19% 17% 16% 16% 18% 19+/-3% +1%
Vote of no confidence in FS Paul Chan 55% 59% 57% 57% 56% 55+/-4% -1%
Net approval rate -35% -42% -40% -40% -37% -36+/-6% +1%
Rating of SJ Teresa Cheng 17.7 14.7[5] 14.1 14.5 14.5 15.9+/-2.1 +1.4
Vote of confidence in SJ Teresa Cheng 10% 7% 7% 9% 8% 9+/-2% +2%
Vote of no confidence in SJ Teresa Cheng 68% 75%[5] 76% 75% 77% 71+/-4% -6%[5]
Net approval rate -59% -69%[5] -68% -66% -69% -61+/-5% +8%[5]

[5]     The difference between the figure and the result from the previous survey has gone beyond the sampling error at 95% confidence level, meaning that the change is statistically significant prima facie. However, whether the difference is 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[6]:

Date of survey 29-31/10/19 28/11-3/12/19 3-8/1/20 3-6/2/20 Latest change
Sample size 510 588-638 588-620 578-609
Response rate 65.0% 63.2% 72.0% 77.6%
Latest findings Finding Finding Finding Finding & error
Vote of confidence in Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing 23% 23% 24% 26+/-4% +2%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing 27% 33%[7] 30% 29+/-4% -1%
Net approval rate -4% -11% -6% -3+/-6% +3%
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury James Lau 17% 18% 18% 17+/-3% -1%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury James Lau 24% 24% 23% 26+/-4% +3%
Net approval rate -7% -6% -5% -9+/-5% -4%
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Development Michael Wong 14% 17% 16% 15+/-3% -1%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Development Michael Wong 31% 30% 32% 30+/-4% -2%
Net approval rate -16%[7] -13% -16% -15+/-5%
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Labour and Welfare Law Chi-kwong 18%[7] 20% 22% 20+/-3% -2%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Labour and Welfare Law Chi-kwong 33% 36% 41% 36+/-4% -5%
Net approval rate -15%[7] -16% -19% -16+/-6% +3%
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau 24%[7] 26% 25% 23+/-3% -3%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau 35% 29% 38%[7] 41+/-4% +3%
Net approval rate -11%[7] -4% -13%[7] -18+/-6% -5%
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Innovation and Technology Nicholas Yang 17% 16% 16% 16+/-3%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Innovation and Technology Nicholas Yang 35% 32% 38%[7] 35+/-4% -3%
Net approval rate -18% -16% -22% -18+/-6% +3%
Vote of confidence in Secretary for the Civil Service Joshua Law 17% 18% 18% 22+/-3% +4%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for the Civil Service Joshua Law 37% 42% 47% 42+/-4% -5%
Net approval rate -20%[7] -23% -29% -20+/-6% +9%[7]
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Patrick Nip 12%[7] 16% 11%[7] 16+/-3% +5%[7]
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Patrick Nip 50%[7] 43%[7] 44% 45+/-4% +1%
Net approval rate -38%[7] -27%[7] -32% -29+/-6% +4%
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan 15% 17% 18% 20+/-3% +1%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan 54% 50% 50% 49+/-4% -1%
Net approval rate -39% -34% -31% -29+/-6% +2%
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan 27%[7] 22% 21% 19+/-3% -2%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan 37%[7] 43%[7] 45% 54+/-4% +9%[7]
Net approval rate -10%[7] -21%[7] -24% -35+/-6% -11%[7]
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung 11% 12% 11% 16+/-3% +5%[7]
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung 60% 62% 66% 59+/-4% -7%[7]
Net approval rate -48% -50% -55% -43+/-6% +12%[7]
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Home Affairs Lau Kong-wah 10%[7] 14% 14% 12+/-3% -2%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Home Affairs Lau Kong-wah 59% 58% 56% 59+/-4% +3%
Net approval rate -49% -44% -42% -46+/-6% -4%
Vote of confidence in Secretary for Security John Lee 9%[7] 15%[7] 14% 15+/-3% +1%
Vote of no confidence in Secretary for Security John Lee 73%[7] 66%[7] 68% 65+/-4% -2%
Net approval rate -63%[7] -51%[7] -54% -50+/-6% +4%

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

[7]     The difference between the figure and the result from the previous survey has gone beyond the sampling error at 95% confidence level, meaning that the change is statistically significant prima facie. However, whether the difference is 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 shows that the popularity rating of CE Carrie Lam now stands at 20.3 marks. Her approval rate is 13%, disapproval rate 81%, giving a net popularity of negative 68 percentage points. All popularity figures have not changed much from two weeks ago.

As for the Secretaries of Departments, the support rating of CS Matthew Cheung is 22.9 marks, approval rate 12%, disapproval rate 59%, giving a net popularity of negative 47 percentage points. The support rating of FS Paul Chan is 26.6 marks, approval rate 19%, disapproval rate 55%, thus a net popularity of negative 36 percentage points. As for SJ Teresa Cheng, her support rating is 15.9 marks, approval rate 9%, disapproval rate 71%, giving a net popularity of negative 61 percentage points, registering a significant increase of 8 percentage points. The rating and net popularity of Matthew Cheung have again registered historical lows since he took office.

As for the Directors of Bureaux, all of them register negative net approval rates. The top position goes to Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing, followed by Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury James Lau, Secretary for Development Michael Wong, Secretary for Labour and Welfare Law Chi-kwong, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau, Secretary for Innovation and Technology Nicholas Yang, Secretary for the Civil Service Joshua Law, Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Patrick Nip, Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan, Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan, Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung, Secretary for Home Affairs Lau Kong-wah and Secretary for Security John Lee.

Compared to one month ago, the net approval rates of 8 among 13 Directors have gone up, 4 have gone down while 1 remain unchanged. Those of Kevin Yeung, Joshua Law and Sophia Chan have changed beyond sampling error, up by 12, up by 9 and down by 11 percentage points respectively. The net approval rates of Sophia Chan, Edward Yau and James Lau have registered historical lows since they took office.

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

The following table summarizes the grading of CE Carrie Lam and the principal officials:

“Ideal”: those with approval rates of over 66%; ranked by their approval rates shown inside brackets[8]
Nil
“Successful”: those with approval rates of over 50%; ranked by their approval rates shown inside brackets[8]
Nil
“Mediocre”: those not belonging to other 5 types; ranked by their approval rates shown inside brackets[8]
Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing (26%)

Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau Tang-wah (23%)

Secretary for the Civil Service Joshua Law Chi-kong (22%)

Secretary for Labour and Welfare Law Chi-kwong (20%)

Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan Fan (20%)

Secretary for Innovation and Technology Nicholas Yang Wei-hsiung (16%)

Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Patrick Nip Tak-kuen (16%)

 
“Inconspicuous”: those with recognition rates of less than 50%; ranked by their approval rates[8]; the first figure inside bracket is approval rate while the second figure is recognition rate
Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury James Henry Lau Jr (17%, 43%)

Secretary for Development Michael Wong Wai-lun (15%, 45%)

 
“Depressing”: those with disapproval rates of over 50%; ranked by their disapproval rates shown inside brackets[8]
Secretary for Security John Lee Ka-chiu (65%)

CS Matthew Cheung Kin-chung (59%)

Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung Yun-hung (59%)

Secretary for Home Affairs Lau Kong-wah (59%)

FS Paul Chan Mo-po (55%)

Secretary for Food and Health Sophia Chan Siu-chee (54%)

“Disastrous”: those with disapproval rates of over 66%; ranked by their disapproval rates shown inside brackets[8]
CE Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor (81%)

SJ Teresa Cheng Yeuk-wah (71%)

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

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 become “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 3 to 8 January, 2020 while this survey was conducted from 3 to 6 February, 2020. 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.

6/2/20 People rush to purchase daily necessities.
5/2/20 The government announces people entering Hong Kong from mainland China will be placed on a 14-day quarantine.
4/2/20 First death from Wuhan pneumonia is reported in Hong Kong.
3/2/20 The government announces further closure of borders.
2/2/20 Hospital Authority Employees Alliance members will go on strike starting tomorrow.
31/1/20 The government refuses full border closure.
29/1/20 People rush to purchase masks, which are in short supply.
28/1/20 The government announces partial border closure.
27/1/20 The government imposes immigration restrictions on Hubei residents and people who visited Hubei.
23/1/20 A lockdown of Wuhan is announced.
22/1/20 Two “highly suspected” Wuhan pneumonia cases are found in Hong Kong.
21/1/20 Wuhan pneumonia continues to spread rapidly and into Taiwan.
20/1/20 Wuhan pneumonia spreads rapidly in China.
19/1/20 Rally at Central turns into a conflict between protestors and the police.
14/1/20 The government announces ten initiatives to benefit livelihoods of the people.
13/1/20 The government plans to provide over $10 billion to Ocean Park as a subsidy.
11/1/20 Tsai Ing-wen wins Taiwan’s presidential election.
9/1/20 Experts say Wuhan pneumonia is caused by a new coronavirus.
7/1/20 The government adds Wuhan pneumonia to the list of notifiable diseases.
4/1/20 Luo Huining is appointed the Director of the Liaison Office.
3/1/20 Wuhan authorities announce an increase of pneumonia cases to 44.

Data Analysis

The latest survey shows that the popularity rating of CE Carrie Lam now stands at 20.3 marks. Her net popularity is negative 68 percentage points. Both popularity figures have not changed much from two weeks ago.

As for the Secretaries of Departments, the support rating of CS Matthew Cheung is 22.9 marks and his net popularity is negative 47 percentage points, both being historical lows since he took office. The support rating of FS Paul Chan is 26.6 marks and his net popularity is negative 36 percentage points. As for SJ Teresa Cheng, her support rating is 15.9 marks and her net popularity is negative 61 percentage points, registering a significant increase of 8 percentage points.

As for the Directors of Bureaux, all 13 of them register negative net approval rates. Compared to one month ago, the net approval rates of 8 among 13 Directors have gone up, 4 have gone down while 1 remains unchanged. Those of Kevin Yeung, Joshua Law and Sophia Chan have changed beyond sampling error, up by 12, 9 and down by 11 percentage points respectively. The net approval rates of Sophia Chan, Edward Yau and James Lau have registered historical lows since they took office.

Detailed Findings

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