MALAYSIA Tanah Tumpah Darahku


Thursday, May 19, 2022

Health concerns give way to economic worries


More Malaysians are now prepared to spend on household items.

PETALING JAYA: We may have yet to beat Covid-19, but worries about its impact on our health is already receding fast.

In a survey conducted this month by market research outfit Ipsos, only 31% of Malaysians expressed concern about the pandemic, down 10% from the previous month.

Even so, this is still higher than the world average, which stood at 16% in May, down just 2% from the previous month.

The monthly survey, which is conducted in 28 countries, covers about 500 respondents in Malaysia.

On the other hand, concerns about economic and integrity issues continue to rise. A total of 53% of Malaysians are now more concerned about financial and political corruption, compared with 48% in the previous survey.

According to the survey, concerns about inflation as well as poverty and social inequality also saw an uptrend. The number of people who are worried about rising inflation rose 3% to 27% while those who continue to fret about poverty and social inequality was also up 3% to 30%.

Ipsos public affairs associate director Lars Erik Lie attributed the rising concern about inflation to a recovery in consumer demand and increased pressure on supply chains, both brought on by global events such as the war in Ukraine.

However, worries about unemployment saw a downtrend, most likely in tandem with the reopening of the various economic sectors and emergence of new job opportunities.

Nonetheless, 34% of respondents still expressed concerned about unemployment in May, compared with 37% previously.

Malaysians have also become more generous with their spending. The number of those who are now prepared to spend on household items or to make major purchases continued to rise.

In May, those who expressed a willingness to spend on household purchases stood at 44%, up from 40% in March and 43% in April.

The number of people who are prepared to make major purchases also rose — from 33% in March to 39% in April and then 40% in May.

Nonetheless, they are still way below the 59% achieved in June 2018 for both categories. - FMT

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