Should Australia be a Country that “Makes things”

Jan 23, 2012

Q. A number of politicians have said about the manufacturing industry that Australia should be an economy that “makes things.” Do you agree or disagree?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Total agree 79% 84% 84% 76%
Total disagree 6% 6% 7% 6%
Strongly agree 25% 27% 27% 16%
Agree 54% 57% 57% 60%
Disagree 6% 5% 7% 5%
Strongly disagree * * 1%
Don’t know 14% 10% 9% 18%

There was strong agreement with the idea that Australia should be an economy that “makes things”. 79% agreed and only 6% of respondents disagreed.

84% of both Labor and Liberal/National voters agreed – but generally results were similar across demographic groups.

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2012 Outlook – Economy and Family

Dec 19, 2011

Q. Thinking about the next 12 months, do you think 2012 will be a good or bad year for each of the following?

Total good

Dec 10

Total bad

Dec10

Total good Total bad Very good Good Neither good nor bad Bad Very bad Don’t know/Not applicable
The Australian economy 48% 16% 29% 35% 3% 26% 32% 28% 7% 3%
Your personal financial situation 39% 20% 33% 27% 4% 29% 38% 20% 7% 2%
Your workplace * 47% 16% 45% 20% 6% 39% 36% 15% 5% 2%
You and your family overall 51% 14% 52% 16% 10% 42% 30% 12% 4% 2%

* based on working people

Overall, respondents were optimistic that 2012 would be a good year for themselves overall (52%) and their workplace (45%). They tended to be less optimistic about their financial situation (33% good/27% bad) and somewhat pessimistic about the Australian economy (29%/35%).

Compared to expectations 12 months ago, respondents were much less optimistic about the Australian economy (48% good last year compared to 29% good this year) and also rather less optimistic about their own financial situation (39%/20% last year compared to 33%/27% this year).

When compared with last week’s questions on perceptions of 2011, these figures suggest that respondents expect 2012 to be better than 2011 for themselves and their family (net +36% for next year compared to net +24% for this year), a little better for their workplace (+25% next year, +20% last year) and their own financial situation (+6% next year, -2% this year). The Australian economy is expected to be a little worse in 2012 (-6% next year compared to +2% last year).

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Performance of Australian Economy

Dec 19, 2011

Q. How do you think the Australian economy is performing in comparison to other developed countries?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Total better 73% 84% 72% 80%
Total worse 7% 3% 8% 1%
A lot better 27% 44% 19% 32%
A little better 46% 40% 53% 48%
About the same 16% 13% 16% 12%
A little worse 5% 2% 5% 1%
A lot worse 2% 1% 3%
Don’t know 4% 1% 3% 6%

If ‘a lot better’ or ‘a little better’ –

Q. How much credit do the following deserve for the current performance of Australia’s economy?

A lot Some A little None Don’t know
The Federal Labor Government 18% 31% 23% 21% 6%
The previous Coalition Government 21% 31% 26% 15% 6%
The booming resources sector 47% 31% 12% 3% 7%
The Reserve Bank 6% 42% 29% 13% 9%

73% think that the Australian economy is performing better than other developed countries and only 7% think it is performing worse.

Respondents give most credit for the performance of the economy to the booming resources sector (78% a lot or some credit). They give similar credit to the Labor Government (49%) and the previous Coalition Government (52%).

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The Past Year – The Economy and Industries

Dec 12, 2011

Q. Thinking about the last 12 months, has it been a good or bad year for each of the following?

Total good

(Dec 10

Total bad

(Dec 10)

Total good Total bad Very good Good Neither good nor bad Bad Very bad Don’t know
The banks 69% 13% 71% 8% 35% 36% 16% 6% 2% 4%
The mining industry 57% 14% 68% 11% 34% 34% 15% 8% 3% 6%
Large companies and corporations 44% 15% 40% 22% 8% 32% 32% 18% 4% 6%
The Australian economy 41% 20% 33% 31% 4% 29% 32% 24% 7% 3%
The media 30% 14% 25% 27% 6% 19% 37% 19% 8% 10%
Farming and agriculture 14% 50% 23% 40% 2% 21% 30% 28% 12% 7%
The environment 14% 37% 20% 33% 3% 17% 41% 24% 9% 6%
Small business 14% 45% 10% 61% 1% 9% 24% 42% 19% 6%

A majority of respondents think it has been a good year for the banks (71%) and the mining industry (68%). They are also more likely to think it has been a good year for large companies and corporations (40% good/22% bad) and the economy (33%/31%). However, they are more likely to think the year has been bad for small business (61%), farming and agriculture (40%) and the environment (33%).

In terms of the economy, Labor voters (50% good/18% bad) and Greens voters (47%/15%) were more likely to think it has been a good year – while 45% of Liberal/National voters considered it poor and 23% good.

Compared to last years’ results, respondents considered 2011 a better year than 2010 for the mining industry (up 11% to 68% good), farming and agriculture (up 9% to 23%) and the environment (up 6% to 20%). Perceptions of the economy dropped from a net +21% to +2%.

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Economic Prosperity

Oct 17, 2011

Q. Which one of the following do you believe will be the most important factor in Australia’s economic prosperity over the next 20 years?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
A strong resources sector 29% 29% 35% 18%
Continued growth in China and India 21% 23% 22% 24%
Investment in skills 20% 22% 16% 23%
Prioritising innovation and technology 18% 18% 13% 31%
A strong banking and finance sector 12% 9% 13% 5%

29% believe that a strong resources sector will be the most important factor in Australia’s economic prosperity over the next 20 years and 21% nominate the continued growth in China and India. Labor and Coalition voters were more likely to niominate “a strong resources sector” while 31% of Greens voters nominated “prioritising innovation and technology”.

Those on higher incomes were more likely to nominate “a strong resources sector “  – 36% of those on income $1,600+ pw.

There were no major differences by age group.

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The Economy

Oct 3, 2011

Q. Over the next 12 months do you think economic conditions in Australia will get better, get worse or stay much the same?

1 Dec

08

15 Jun 09 5 Oct

09

28 Jun

10

18 Oct

10

4 April

11

4 Jul

11

3 Oct

11

Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Total better 21% 43% 66% 33% 40% 27% 22% 16% 26% 12% 15%
Total worse 61% 37% 15% 31% 30% 37% 49% 58% 39% 72% 58%
Get a lot better 2% 5% 8% 5% 6% 4% 3% 2% 5% 1% 3%
Get a little better 19% 38% 58% 28% 34% 23% 19% 14% 21% 11% 12%
Get a little worse 45% 28% 11% 23% 20% 27% 31% 41% 34% 47% 44%
Get a lot worse 16% 9% 4% 8% 10% 10% 18% 17% 5% 25% 14%
Stay much the same 13% 17% 15% 30% 24% 27% 25% 22% 33% 15% 27%
No opinion 5% 3% 4% 7% 6% 8% 4% 4% 3% 1% 1%

Confidence in the economic outlook has weakened with the percentage of respondents believing conditions to be getting worse increasing 9 points to 58% (total worse), from 49% in July this year.  Those believing that economic conditions will get better over the next 12 months has fallen 6 points from 22% to 16% (total better).

Compared to 12 months ago, respondents are far less likely to think things will get better, having fallen from 40% (total better) in October 2010 to 16% (total better).  Conversely, pessimism has risen since this time last year, with the proportion of respondents believing conditions to get worse increasing from 30% (total worse) in October 2010 to 58% (total worse).

Labor voters are far less likely to think that things will get worse (39% total worse).  Coalition voters are the most pessimistic, with 72% (total worse) believing that thing will get worse over the next 12 months.

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Best Leader for GFC

Sep 5, 2011

Q. If there was another global financial crisis or a recession, which of the following would be best to lead Australia?

Total Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens
Kevin Rudd 24% 34% 13% 37%
Tony Abbott 20% 4% 44%
Julia Gillard 13% 42% 1% 18%
Malcolm Turnbull 13% 7% 17% 17%
Joe Hockey 7% 1% 11% 3%
Don’t know 22% 12% 15% 25%

24% think Kevin Rudd would be best to lead Australia if there was another GFC and 20% favour Tony Abbott.

Among Labor voters Julia Gillard is preferred over Kevin Rudd 42% to 34%. Support for the current party leaders among their own voters is very similar – 42% of Labor voters prefer Julia Gillard and 44% of Liberal/National voters prefer Tony Abbott.

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Attitudes to Mining Tax

Sep 5, 2011

Q. Do you agree or disagree with the following statements about the proposed mining tax?

Total agree Total disagree Strongly agree Agree Disagree Strongly disagree Don’t know
A mining tax is needed so that more of the profits of mining companies are kept in Australia instead of being sent overseas. 57% 24% 26% 31% 15% 9% 19%
A mining tax will hurt business and undermine the country’s economic recovery. 36% 44% 13% 23% 29% 15% 20%
It’s about time all corporations, including the miners, started paying their fair share of taxes. 62% 19% 26% 36% 13% 6% 18%
A miners’ tax is just another example of the Gillard ALP’s anti-business attitude. 34% 45% 16% 18% 24% 21% 21%
The mining companies make huge profits from resources which belong to all Australians, so all Australians should benefit from these large profits. 67% 15% 34% 33% 12% 3% 18%

There was strong agreement that all corporations, including the miners, started paying their fair share of taxes (62%) and that all Australians should benefit from the large profits of mining companies (67%). Respondents were more likely to disagree that a mining tax will hurt business and undermine the country’s economic recovery (44% disagree/36% agree) and that the tax is just another example of the Gillard ALP’s anti-business attitude (45% disagree/34% agree).

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