Press release №2128
26.12.2018
2018 YEAR IN REVIEW: EVENTS, PEOPLE, ASSESSMENTS. EXPECTATIONS FOR 2019

IN BRIEF

  • The World Cup was the most high-profile event in 2018
  • 2018 was positive personally for 57% of Russians and their families
  • 40% assess the outgoing year negatively
  • Three-quarters of Russians will celebrate the New Year’s Eve at home (80%)
  • An average amount of money spent on celebration is 13,755 rub., which is 4% lower than the last year figure

Russians say that the outgoing year was better personally for them and their family members, however the national-scale dynamics looks less optimistic. Russians have lower expectations for 2019 than a year ago.

MOSCOW, December 26, 2018. Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VCIOM) presents the data of a survey devoted to what Russians remember about 2018 and what they expect from 2019, as well as how they are going to celebrate the New Year’s Eve, what they will give as gifts and how much they will spend.

2018 events

The World Cup was the major event in 2018 (12%). Changes in pension legislation are among major events on a national scale for 24% of Russians. The main scandals were the Kerch strait incident (10%), Ukraine-related events (8%) and the Skripal case (7%).

The Medialogia company study of the Russian media suggests that the list of the most significant world events is headed by the Skripal case (14,725.60). The 2018 World Cup is at the top of the list of Russian events (20,647.66) followed by the Kemerovo shopping mall tragedy (16,116.29) and Putin’s victory in the presidential elections (12,208.61).

2018 ratings

Vladimir Putin is named the politician of the year (46%) he is followed by Sergey Lavrov (18%), Sergey Shoygu (9%), Dmitry Medvedev (6%), Vladimir Zhirinovsky (5%), etc.

The list of the most popular athletes is headed by the figure skaters Alina Zagitova (11%) and Evgeniya Medvedeva, football players Artem Dzyuba (8%) and Igor Akinfeev (7%), the fighter Khabib Nurmagomedov (5%).

As to actors, Sergey Bezrukov has been the most famous for several consecutive years (8%); Konstantin Khabensky (5%) is on the second place. Philipp Kirkorov is the top music performer of the year (10%). The hardest question refers to the writer of the year: all informative answers do not exceed 2%: Daria Dontsova (2%), Alexander Pushkin (2%), Zakhar Prilepin (2%); the remainder gained 1% and even less.

The most popular TV show is the Rossiya-1 project “60 minutes” (8%). The best TV series are “The Policeman of Rublyovka” (Politseysky s Rublevki)  and “The Major” (5%, each). The best movies in 2018 are “Going Vertical” (Dvizhenie vverkh”) (3%), “The Avengers” (Mstiteli) and “T-34” (2%, each).

2018 emotions and assessments; expectations for 2019

Russians bid goodbye to 2018 being in a good mood: the corresponding index* reached 56 p. Forty-nine percent express joy and expect changes for the better; 27% are calm and confident. At the same time, in 2018 more respondents had negative emotions: an increase in “tiredness” from 8% to 19%, an increase in “disturbance” from 10% to 15%, “sadness” from 4% to 10%, “disappointment” from 3% to 10%.

The assessments of personal outcomes are higher than a year ago: index of personal outcomes** reached 17 p. in 2018 (14 p. in 2017). The outgoing year was “good” and “successful” personally for 57% of respondents; 40% say difficulties prevailed and the year was hard for them. The assessments on a national scale are less positive: the corresponding index** shows a considerable decrease compared to the previous year (from -12 to -27 p.p.). The balance of assessments is still negative: 33% view the year positively, whereas 60% negatively.

Russians do not expect too much from the upcoming year: the index of personal expectations*** has declined from 64 p. in 2017 to 34 p. in 2018. The figure on a national scale has also dropped (from 42 p. to 3 p.). Every fifth respondent (21%) considers that the next year will be successful for them personally; 13% for the country in general.

New Year’s Eve celebration plans, expenditures and gifts

Home remains a customary location to spend the New Year’s Eve (80% will stay at home). A further 6% will pay a visit to friends; 4% will go to dacha. Just 5% of respondents do not have any particular plans for the New Year’s Eve.

Spending on the New Year’s Eve celebration has decreased by 4%: an average amount is 13,755 rub. (vs 14,299 rub. last year). Eighty-seven percent of respondents will spend approximately 5,006 rub. on gifts (5,301 rub. in 2017.); 89% will spend 4,413 rub. on food; 53% are going to spend 4,335  rub. on visits to theatres, restaurants and New Year party for children.

Desires and opportunities concerning the gift ideas do not coincide this year: most of respondents are going to give sweets, spirits and delicacies (25%), whereas 8% would like to get them as presents. Respondents also mention souvenirs and toys (23%, each), perfumery and cosmetics (21%) as other gift ideas. The most desired presents are tour packages (11%), tickets to cinemas, theatres and dinner at a restaurant (10%); thirteen percent are not willing to give any gifts; 27% would refuse to receive presents.

Detailed results are available in PPT file  

* Index describes an overall Russian perception of the outgoing year and hopes for the upcoming year. The Index is based on the question: “What feelings do you have bidding a farewell to the outgoing year and welcoming the upcoming year?” The answer “good feeling, a sense of optimism” corresponds to the coefficient “0.9”; the answer “I feel neither emotional upheaval nor negative emotions”– “0.5”; “Rather bad mood, pessimistic expectations” – “0.1”. The Index is measured in points and can vary between 10 and 90. The higher the value of index is, the more optimistic Russians are bidding farewell to the outgoing year and welcoming the upcoming year.

** Indices of personal outcomes and general country’s outcomes are based on the questions “What was the outgoing year like for you personally and your family?” and “What was the outgoing year for Russia in general?” The Index is calculated as the difference of positive and negative assessments. The value of Index may vary between -100 and 100 points. The higher the value of Index is, the more positive respondents are about the outgoing year.

*** Indices of Personal Expectations and Index of National Expectations are based on the questions “What do you and your family expect for the upcoming year?” and “What should Russia expect for the upcoming year?” The Index is calculated as the difference of positive and negative assessments. The value may vary between -100 and 100 points. The higher the value of Index is, the more positive respondents are about the future. 

The VCIOM-Sputnik survey was conducted in December, 2018. The survey involved 1,600 Russians aged 18 and over, and was carried out using stratified dual-frame random sample based on a complete list of landline and mobile phone numbers operating in Russia. The data were weighted according to selection probability and social and demographic characteristics. The margin of error at a 95% confidence level does not exceed 2.5%. In addition to sampling error, minor changes in question wording and different circumstances arising during the fieldwork can introduce bias into the survey.

The 2003-2016 results are based on household surveys.

The monitoring and analysis of the Russian media was carried out by the Medialogia Company using the Medialogia database involving 48,100 sources (TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, information agencies, online media). The period of study was from January 1st through December 19th, 2018.

 

Can you name three most important world events happened in 2018? (open-ended question, not more than three answers, shown are informative answers mentioned by at least 2% of respondents)
Total respondents
World Cup in Russia 12
Events in Syria 9
Kerch Bridge opening 6
Pension reform in Russia 5
Ukraine developments 3
Kerch strait incident 3
G-20 summit 3
New sanctions against Russia 3
Russia-Ukraine relations 3
Russian foreign policy 3
Presidential elections in Russia 2
Severny potok-2 (Nord stream 2) natural gas pipeline 2

 

Can you name three most important events happened in Russia in 2018? (open-ended question, not more than three answers, shown are informative answers mentioned by at least 2% of respondents)
Total respondents
Pensions reform 24
Hosting the World Cup 13
Kerch bridge opening 8
Presidential elections 6
Value-added tax increase 4
Price increase for gasoline 4
High inflation rate 2
Kerch strait incident 2
Fall in living standards 2

  

  Event visibility
Three major world events in Russian media
UK allegations against Russia: blaming Petrov and Boshirov for Sergey and Yulia Skripal’s poisoning, strengthening sanctions against Russia    14,725.60
USA, France, UK  staged a strike on Syria after the reported use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government in Douma 10,133.11
Russia-Ukraine conflict in the Kerch strait   9,231.47
Three major Russian events in Russian media   
World Cup in Russia   20,647.66
Kemerovo tragedy, Zimnyaya Vishnya fire 16,116.29
Victory of Vladimir Putin in presidential elections 12,208.61

  

What feeling do you have bidding farewell to 2018 and welcoming 2019? (closed-ended question, one answer, %)
  2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Good feeling, a sense of optimism 33 40 29 34 33 34 34 35 41 41 45 48 39
I feel neither emotional upheaval nor negative emotions  49 44 46 49 51 50 54 51 45 43 42 38 38
Rather bad mood, pessimistic expectations 16 8 20 11 12 10 10 9 10 14 12 11 21
Don’t know 2 8 5 6 4 6 2 5 4 2 1 3 2
Index* 56 59 51 56 56 57 59 58 60 60 63 63 56

  

What feelings do you have on New Year’s eve? (closed-ended question, not more than three answers, %)
  2012 2013 2014   2015   2016   2017   2018  
Joy, expectations of changes for the better 35 35 42 43 50 49 49
Calmness and confidence 23 27 23 24 25 32 27
Tiredness, devastation 16 18 13 17 12 8 19
Disturbance   15 12 21 14 7 10 15
Sadness 9 9 11 9 14 4 10
Disappointment 8 6 6 7 5 3 10
Other 1 1 2 3 2 1 2
I do not feel anything special   17 16 13 9 9 18 7
Don’t know 1 1 3 1 1 2 2

 

 

What was the outgoing year like for you personally and your family? (closed-ended question, one answer, %)
  03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18  
Very good 6 4 6 9 7 4 4 4 4 5 6 5 7 8 7 7
Basically good 49 39 45 50 55 49 38 42 53 50 46 54 45 44 48 50
Rather difficult  37 43 39 33 30 35 45 44 35 39 41 33 34 34 29 28
Very bad, difficult  7 13 9 6 5 9 11 7 5 5 6 6 13 13 12 12
Don’t know 1 1 1 2 3 3 2 3 3 1 1 2 1 1 4 3
Index ** 11 -13 3 20 27 9 -14 -5 17 11 5 20 5 5 14 17

  

What was the outgoing year like for Russia in general? (closed-ended question, one answer, %)
  03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18  
Very good 5 1 4 6 7 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 5 5 4
Basically good 40 26 42 47 57 37 18 23 38 36 36 33 19 30 35 29
Rather difficult  46 53 44 37 25 47 61 55 47 51 50 52 57 44 41 43
Very bad, difficult  4 12 5 3 2 7 14 12 5 5 5 9 18 15 11 17
Don’t know 5 8 5 7 9 7 5 8 8 6 6 3 3 6 8 7
Index ** -5 -38 -3 13 37 -15 -55 -42 -12 -18 -16 -25 -53 -24 -12 -27

  

What do you and your family expect for the upcoming year? (closed-ended question, one answer, %)
  03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18  
I think the upcoming year will be rather good 27 10 12 19 21 12 14 11 11 8 13 11 23 27 27 21
I think that the upcoming year will be generally good  47 45 52 51 54 37 47 51 54 51 52 54 43 48 53 45
It will be rather difficult  20 34 27 21 15 39 27 24 23 30 28 26 26 18 15 27
I think it will be very bad 1 5 3 1 1 4 3 2 3 3 2 3 3 3 1 5
Don’t know 5 6 6 8 9 8 9 12 9 8 5 6 5 4 4 2
Index *** 53 16 34 48 59 6 31 36 39 26 35 36 37 54 64 34

 

What should Russia expect for the upcoming year? (closed-ended question, one answer, %)
03   04   05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18  
I think the upcoming year will be rather good 13 6 9 14 18 8 8 8 8 8 8 9 18 24 21 13
I think that the upcoming year will be generally good  48 37 49 53 52 30 42 43 46 51 48 44 37 44 48 37
It will be rather difficult  29 41 30 22 17 48 35 29 31 30 33 35 34 21 25 40
I think it will be very bad 1 4 3 1 1 6 3 4 3 3 3 5 6 4 2 7
Don’t know 9 12 9 10 12 8 12 16 12 8 8 7 5 7 4 3
Index *** 31 -2 25 44 52 -16 12 18 20 26 20 13 15 43 42 3

  

How are you going to celebrate the New Year’s Eve?  (closed-ended question, one answer, %)
  03   05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18  
At home 74 73 77 76 77 75 76 72 73 76 74 77 76 78 80
Visiting friends 15 15 13 14 13 12 14 16 16 16 14 11 11 8 6
At dacha  (my own, my friends’, my relatives’ dacha) 1 1 1 1 2 1 2 2 2 1 2 2 4 3 4
At a restaurant (club, dance party) 2 3 2 2 2 2 2 3 2 2 3 2 2 1 1
In the countryside, at a holiday centre, health resort 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 1 1 1
Abroad 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 1
I will not celebrate the New Year’s eve 2 2 2 2 2 4 2 2 3 1 3 3 3 4 5
Don’t know 5 5 4 4 3 5 3 4 3 4 3 3 2 4 2

 

And how much money are you going to spend for the New Year celebration?  (closed-ended question, one answer per each option based on the answers of those who plan spending)
Average spending, rub. 
05   06   07   08   09   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18
Gifts to relatives 1105 1409 1764 1824 2058 2200 2497 2666 2853 3142 4198 4338 5301 5007
New Year table 1155 1437 1762 1879 2116 2142 2417 2593 2824 3103 4069 4164 4596 4413
Other spending (Christmas tree, travel packages, theatres, restaurants, et cet.) 902 1169 1431 1502 1654 1826 2040 2169 2437 2383 3617 3895 4402 4335
Total (total expenditures) 3163 4015 4957 5206 5828 6168 6953 7428 8114 8628 11884 12397 14299 13755
An increase compared to the previous year, % 
  05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Gifts to relatives   27 25 3 12 6 14 7 7 10 34 3 22 -5
New Year table   24 22 6 12 1 13 7 9 10 31 2 10 -4
Other spending (Christmas tree, travel packages, theatres, restaurants, et cet.)   29 22 4 10 10 12 6 12 -2 52 8 13 -1
Total (total expenditures)   26 23 4 11 5 13 7 9 6 38 4 15 -4

  

What are you GOING TO GIVE as a New Year gift to your friends and relatives?  (closed-ended question, not more than four answers, %)
05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Candies, spirits, specialties 26 30 29 30 24 28 29 29 28 28 24 26 22 25
Souvenirs (pens, notepads, purse, et cet.) 33 36 38 37 30 31 31 35 42 35 28 30 31 23
Toys 23 29 29 28 23 26 25 24 23 23 22 24 23 23
Perfumery, cosmetics, bijouterie 21 23 22 21 20 24 23 23 25 21 15 19 21 21
Money 4 6 7 6 8 7 10 11 9 8 10 13 9 14
Household appliances (tea-kettle, iron, coffee maker) 4 6 5 5 4 8 7 6 8 5 6 7 9 9
Clothes, shoes 7 8 9 9 6 8 9 10 7 7 6 9 8 9
Mobile phones 3 5 4 3 5 5 5 6 7 5 4 4 7 8
Jewellery 4 4 6 5 7 8 7 7 8 6 4 5 6 6
Tickets to concert, theatre, a restaurant dinner 2 2 1 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 4 4 6
Flowers  8 9 9 7 7 6 6 7 7 7 3 7 6 4
Camera, video camera, TV set, sound system) 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 1 2 2 1 1
CD, DVD 7 9 8 5 6 6 4 2 7 2 1 1 1 1
Computer 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
Tour package 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 1
Car 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Other 5 4 8 7 4 4 3 4 2 4 5 5 8 2
I will not give anyone anything 15 12 14 16 15 14 10 13 12 11 16 14 13 13
Don’t know 12 9 9 9 15 11 16 7 9 12 11 8 5 6

                                                                                                               

What would you like to have as a New Year gift from your friends and relatives?  (closed-ended question, not more than four answers, %)
  2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Tour package 6 7 8 10 9 6 6 6 9 11
Perfumery, cosmetics, bijouterie 9 11 10 10 8 10 5 9 12 10
Tickets to concert, theatre, a restaurant dinner 3 3 4 5 3 5 4 6 9 10
Money 10 10 15 17 17 11 11 15 6 9
Candies, spirits, specialties 4 5 9 7 7 10 5 6 7 8
Household appliances (tea-kettle, iron, coffee maker) 4 6 5 6 5 4 4 5 6 8
Souvenirs (pens, notepads, purse, et cet.) 7 8 9 7 14 13 7 8 14 7
Jewellery 9 10 8 9 8 8 6 7 6 7
Mobile phone 7 7 6 5 7 5 5 7 5 7
Flowers 4 4 4 5 4 3 3 4 5 5
Car 7 6 7 9 7 4 7 9 4 5
Camera, video camera, TV set, sound system 4 5 7 6 6 4 2 3 2 3
Clothes, shoes 5 6 4 5 5 4 2 3 2 3
Computer 3 4 2 4 4 3 2 3 3 2
Toys 1 2 2 1 2 2 1 1 1 1
CD, DVD 3 2 1 2 4 1 0 1 0 1
I do not want to have anything as a gift 17 16 14 17 18 17 23 19 27 27
Other 5 5 4 5 4 7 13 13 11 2
Don’t know 25 21 23 15 14 18 12 13 8 7

 

Note: Using materials from the site www.wciom.ru or wciom.com, as well as distributed by VCIOM, the reference to the source (or hyperlink for the electronic media) is obligatory! Full or partial reproduction of the Medialogia Company materials in other media must contain a reference to the Medialogia Company.
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