RIGA - With 2019 drawing to a close, 19 percent of people in Latvia consider the outgoing year to be better than the previous one, 16 percent feel it was worse, and 60 percent say this year was no different from 2018, according to a new survey conducted by SKDS pollster in December.
As SKDS head Arnis Kaktins told LETA, the assessment of 2019 is worse than the results obtained in a similar survey a year ago when 29 percent of respondents (10 percentage points more than this year) said that the outgoing year was better than the previous one and only 10 percent (10 percentage points less) said it was worse than 2017.
Kaktins noted that the result obtained in the year-end survey 2018 was the most optimistic in a decade. The most pessimistic result was obtained in 2009 when only 4 percent of respondents in that year's survey said that 2009 had been better than the previous year and 79 percent said it was worse than 2008.
The survey conducted in 2003 produced the best result ever, with 35 percent of respondents regarding 2003 as better than the previous year and only 13 percent saying that the outgoing year was worse than 2002.
Respondents' forecasts about next year also suggest that public sentiment has deteriorated as compared to 2018, Kaktins said.
When asked about next year's prospects, people were no longer as optimistic as at the end of 2018. As many as 39 percent of the surveyed people expect next year to be better for them personally and 25 percent expect improvement for Latvia. Meanwhile, 14 percent of respondents expect 2020 to be worse than this year and 49 percent think that next year will the same as the outgoing year.
At the end of last year, by comparison, 30 percent of respondents said 2019 will be better than 2018, eight percent said it will be worse and 48 percent expected to change.