Economy fails to boost holiday cheer among Pinoys

By Ira Pedrasa,

Posted at Dec 23 2012 08:06 PM | Updated as of Dec 24 2012 04:07 AM

In Mindanao, more expect sad Christmas

MANILA, Philippines -- Despite a relatively rosy economic picture this year, there was no increase in the number of Filipinos expecting a happy Christmas.

Based on a survey done by the Social Weather Stations, 64% of adult Filipinos expect a happy Christmas, unchanged from the same levels in 2011. The expectation of a happy Christmas, in fact, declined from 69% in 2010.

The survey, done from December 8 to December 11, showed that of the 1,200 respondents, 9% expect a sad Christmas, while 26% said it will neither be happy nor sad.

The highest rating was achieved in 2002 with 82%. It then declined to 77% in 2003, and further plunged in the next six years: 64% in 2004, 62% in both 2005 and 2006, 64% in 2007, 63% in 2008, and 64% in 2009.

Interestingly, more Filipinos (25%) would like to have good health the most for Christmas compared to those wishing for money (18%). The latter topped the survey last year with 23%.

Overall, non-material gifts topped the wish list of Filipinos for 2012 at 46% (besides health, they also want family togetherness, among others) compared to material gifts at 43%. This was not the case in 2011: material gifts were what Filipinos wished for at 52%.

Sad Christmas

In Mindanao, which was battered anew by a recent typhoon, expectations of a happy Christmas fell by 17 percentage points to a record low of 52% from 69% last year.

Conversely, expectations of a sad Christmas rose by 4 percentage points in Mindanao to a record-high 14% from 10% in 2011.

Sadness with Christmas in Mindanao used to be within the 2% to 10% range from 2002 to 2011.

Expectations of a happy Christmas rose to 71% in Balance Luzon (71%) and 66% in Visayas (66%). Metro Manila was barely changed at 58%.