POP releases popularities of CE and SAR Government and Public Sentiment Index

 Press Release on June 23, 2020

POP releases popularities of CE and SAR Government
and Public Sentiment Index

Special Announcements

  1. 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.
  2. The popularities of CE and SAR Government and Public Sentiment Index released today by POP are the last of its series before July 1, 2020. Whether they will be continued or not will depend on public support.

Abstract

POP successfully interviewed 1,002 Hong Kong residents by random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers in mid-June. Our survey shows that the popularity rating of CE Carrie Lam now stands at 29.0 marks. Her net popularity is negative 48 percentage points. Both figures have not changed much from half a month ago. The latest net satisfaction of the HKSAR Government stands at negative 54 percentage points while the net trust value is negative 32 percentage points. Both figures also stay more or less the same as last month. People’s net satisfaction rates with the current economic, livelihood and political conditions are negative 52, negative 54 and negative 81 percentage points respectively. All three have improved significantly from a month ago. As for the PSI, the latest figure is 58.9, up by 8.2 points from early June. The effective response rate of the survey is 54.1%. The maximum sampling error of percentages is +/-4%, that of net values is +/-7% and that of ratings is +/-2.2 at 95% confidence level.

Contact Information

Date of survey : 15-18/6/2020
Survey method : Random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers
Target population : Cantonese-speaking Hong Kong residents aged 18 or above
Sample size[1] : 1,002 (including 497 landline and 505 mobile samples)
Effective response rate[2] : 54.1%
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% 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 2019”, while the educational attainment (highest level attended) distribution and economic activity status distribution came from “Women and Men in Hong Kong – Key Statistics (2019 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.

Popularity of CE and SAR Government

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

Date of survey 30/3-2/4/20 14-17/4/20 4-6/5/20 19-21/5/20 1-4/6/20 15-18/6/20 Latest change
Sample size 1,005 1,005 1,004 1,001 1,002 1,002
Response rate 66.7% 64.5% 62.5% 55.6% 64.3% 54.1%
Latest findings Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding & error
Rating of CE Carrie Lam 25.5[4] 27.7 27.9 28.3 27.8 29.0+/-2.2 +1.2
Vote of confidence in
CE Carrie Lam
16% 18% 17% 19% 18% 22+/-3% +3%
Vote of no confidence in
CE Carrie Lam
75% 72% 73% 73% 72% 70+/-3% -2%
Net approval rate -60% -54% -56% -54% -54% -48+/-5% +6%

[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 HKSAR Government are summarized as follows:

Date of survey 16-21/1/20 17-19/2/20 17-20/3/20 14-17/4/20 19-21/5/20 15-18/6/20 Latest change
Sample size[5] 597-641 616-620 613-622 624-664 593-616 620-629
Response rate 69.7% 64.6% 62.9% 64.5% 55.6% 54.1%
Latest findings Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding & error
Satisfaction rate of SARG performance[6] 15% 9%[7] 17%[7] 21% 19% 17+/-3% -2%
Dissatisfaction rate of SARG performance[6] 75% 83%[7] 68%[7] 68% 67% 71+/-4% +3%
Net satisfaction rate -60% -74%[7] -51%[7] -47% -49% -54+/-6% -5%
Mean value[6] 1.8 1.6[7] 2.0[7] 2.0 2.0 1.9+/-0.1 -0.1
Trust in HKSAR Government[6] 19%[7] 14%[7] 25%[7] 29% 27% 27+/-4%
Distrust in HKSAR Government[6] 69%[7] 76%[7] 62%[7] 60% 63% 59+/-4% -4%
Net trust -50%[7] -62%[7] -37%[7] -32% -36% -32+/-7% +4%
Mean value[6] 2.0[7] 1.8[7] 2.3[7] 2.3 2.2 2.3+/-0.1 +0.1

[5]     Before March 2020, weighted count was used to report subsample size. Starting from March 2020, raw count was used instead.

[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]     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.

People’s recent appraisals of society’s conditions are summarized as follows:

Date of survey 16-21/1/20 17-19/2/20 17-20/3/20 14-17/4/20 19-21/5/20 15-18/6/20 Latest change
Sample size 866 1,008 1,004 1,005 1,001 1,002
Response rate 69.7% 64.6% 62.9% 64.5% 55.6% 54.1%
Latest findings Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding Finding & error
Current economic condition:
Satisfaction rate[8]
16% 9%[9] 12%[9] 11% 9% 12+/-2% +3%
Current economic condition:
Dissatisfaction rate[8]
63%[9] 73%[9] 70% 72% 75% 64+/-3% -11%[9]
Net satisfaction rate -47%[9] -64%[9] -58%[9] -61% -66% -52+/-4% +13%[9]
Mean value[8] 2.2[9] 1.9[9] 2.1[9] 2.0 1.9[9] 2.2+/-0.1 +0.3[9]
Current livelihood condition:
Satisfaction rate[8]
17% 9%[9] 16%[9] 14% 12% 12+/-2%
Current livelihood condition:
Dissatisfaction rate[8]
68% 79%[9] 67%[9] 70% 73% 66+/-3% -7%[9]
Net satisfaction rate -52% -69%[9] -51%[9] -56% -61% -54+/-4% +7%[9]
Mean value[8] 2.1 1.8[9] 2.1[9] 2.0 1.9[9] 2.1+/-0.1 +0.2[9]
Current political condition:
Satisfaction rate[8]
6%[9] 3%[9] 6%[9] 7% 3%[9] 3+/-1%
Current political condition:
Dissatisfaction rate[8]
85% 86% 80%[9] 81% 88%[9] 84+/-2% -4%[9]
Net satisfaction rate -79%[9] -83% -74%[9] -74% -86%[9] -81+/-3% +4%[9]
Mean value[8] 1.5 1.4 1.6[9] 1.6 1.4[9] 1.5+/-0.1 +0.1[9]

[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]     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.

Our latest survey shows that the popularity rating of CE Carrie Lam now stands at 29.0 marks. Her approval rate is 22%, disapproval rate 70%, giving a net popularity of negative 48 percentage points. All popularity figures have not changed much from half a month ago.

Regarding the HKSAR Government, the latest satisfaction rate is 17%, whereas 71% were dissatisfied, thus net satisfaction stands at negative 54 percentage points. The mean score is 1.9, meaning close to “quite dissatisfied” in general. Regarding people’s trust in the HKSAR Government, 27% of the respondents expressed trust, 59% expressed distrust. The net trust value is negative 32 percentage points. The mean score is 2.3, meaning between “quite distrust” and “half-half” in general. All of these figures have not changed much from a month ago.

As for people’s satisfaction with the current economic, livelihood and political conditions, the latest satisfaction rates are 12%, 12% and 3% respectively, while the net satisfaction rates are negative 52, negative 54 and negative 81 percentage points respectively. The mean scores of economic condition and livelihood condition are 2.2 and 2.1 respectively, meaning close to “quite dissatisfied” in general; that of political condition is 1.5, meaning between “quite dissatisfied” and “very dissatisfied” in general. All three have improved significantly from a month ago.

Public Sentiment Index

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 chart of PSI, GA and SA are shown below:

Latest figure Public Sentiment Index
(PSI): 58.9 (+8.2)
Government Appraisal
(GA): 62.6 (+1.9)
Society Appraisal
(SA): 56.5 (+12.8)

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

Cut-off date 2/4/20 17/4/20 6/5/20 21/5/20 4/6/20 18/6/20 Latest change
Public Sentiment Index (PSI) 57.1 56.6 56.5 50.8 50.6 58.9 +8.2
Government Appraisal (GA) 60.2 62.8 62.8 60.9 60.7 62.6 +1.9
Rating of CE 25.5 27.7 27.9 28.3 27.8 29.0 +1.2
Net approval rate of CE -60% -54% -56% -54% -54% -48% +6%
Mean value of people’s satisfaction with SARG 2.0[10] 2.0 2.0[10] 2.0 2.0[10] 1.9 -0.1
Mean value of people’s trust in SARG 2.3[10] 2.3 2.3[10] 2.2 2.2[10] 2.3 +0.1
Society Appraisal (SA) 55.9[10] 52.2 52.2[10] 43.7 43.7[10] 56.5 +12.8
People’s satisfaction with political condition 1.6[10] 1.6 1.6[10] 1.4 1.4[10] 1.5 +0.1
Weighting index of political condition 0.34[10] 0.34[10] 0.34[10] 0.34[10] 0.34[10] 0.34[10]
People’s satisfaction with economic condition 2.1[10] 2.0 2.0[10] 1.9 1.9[10] 2.2 +0.3
Weighting index of economic condition 0.32[10] 0.32[10] 0.32[10] 0.32[10] 0.32[10] 0.32[10]
People’s satisfaction with livelihood condition 2.1[10] 2.0 2.0[10] 1.9 1.9[10] 2.1 +0.2
Weighting index of livelihood condition 0.34[10] 0.34[10] 0.34[10] 0.34[10] 0.34[10] 0.34[10]

[10]  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 stands at 58.9, up by 8.2 points from early June. It can be considered as among the worst 1% across the past 20 years or so. Among the two component scores of PSI, the Government Appraisal (GA) Score that reflects people’s appraisal of society’s governance increases by 1.9 points to 62.6, whereas the Society Appraisal (SA) Score that reflects people’s appraisal of the social environment increases by 12.8 points to 56.5. They can both be considered as among the worst 1% across the past 20 years or so.

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 19 to 21 May, 2020 while this survey was conducted from 15 to 18 June, 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.

18/6/20 The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress discusses the national security law.
16/6/20 The government relaxes restrictions and allows group gatherings of up to 50 people.
15/6/20 The Central Government will have enforcement powers regarding the national security law.
12/6/20 The Central Government criticizes groups for organizing referendum for class boycott.
9/6/20 The government announces investment of $27.3 billion in Cathay Pacific Airways to avoid its collapse.
8/6/20 The government announces the arrangements for $10,000 cash payout.
8/6/20 Zhang Xiaoming delivers speech at a webinar to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Basic Law’s promulgation.
4/6/20 June 4 vigils are held in various districts.
3/6/20 Vice-Premier of the State Council Han Zheng meets Carrie Lam.
2/6/20 Local infections with coronavirus appear in Hong Kong again. Prohibition on group gathering is extended for 14 days.
29/5/20 Donald Trump announces new measures toward China and Hong Kong and says China has replaced one country, two systems with one country, one system.
28/5/20 National People’s Congress passes resolution to enact national security law in Hong Kong.
27/5/20 Over 360 people are arrested in protests against the National Anthem Bill and the national security law.
24/5/20 People rally against the national security law on Hong Kong Island. Over 180 people are arrested.
22/5/20 The Central Government will set up national security agencies in Hong Kong after implementation of national security law.
21/5/20 National People’s Congress will deliberate on national security law in Hong Kong.
19/5/20 Unemployment rate in Hong Kong rises to 5.2%.

Data Analysis

Our survey shows that the popularity rating of CE Carrie Lam now stands at 29.0 marks. Her net popularity is negative 48 percentage points. Both figures have not changed much from half a month ago. The latest net satisfaction of the HKSAR Government stands at negative 54 percentage points while the net trust value is negative 32 percentage points. Both figures also stay more or less the same as last month. People’s net satisfaction rates with the current economic, livelihood and political conditions are negative 52, negative 54 and negative 81 percentage points respectively. All three have improved significantly from a month ago.

As for the PSI, the latest figure is 58.9, up by 8.2 points from early June.

Detailed Findings

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