Results of our studies

MOSCOW, February 4, 2009. Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VCIOM) presents results of its latest poll dedicated to public evaluations of unemployment rate (and risk), economic situation in the enterprises, ability for borrowing or making major purchases during the financial crisis.


The topic of unemployment is actively discussed by more than half of Russians (58%); the share of these respondents since October has increased from 41%.  The other 16% say that this subject is being discussed among their friends, relatives and colleagues, but they do not participate in these conversations (9% in October). The share of those who say that this subject is not raised in such circle was in decrease - from 47% in October last year to 25% in January this year.


Slightly over half of Russians (52%) believe that economic state of the enterprises they work at can deteriorate in the next two to three months - 12% are confident that this will happen, 40% think that this is quite possible.  A month ago such forecast was typical for 69% of Russians (10% and 59% respectively). The share of those who believe this scenario is hardly to happen has increased from 10% in December to 26% in January. 15% think that this is virtually impossible.


The share of those who look without optimism at the possibility of layoffs in their enterprises is declining as well - from 65% in December to 52% in January (15% are confident that this will take place, 37% think this may happen). The share of those who consider layoffs hardly possible has come up from 12% to 27%; there is a slight decline in the share of those who think this is not possible - from 19% to 16%.


13% of Russians face delayed payments of salaries (10% in December). 8% are confident that their co-workers will be in a similar situation (12% in December); 34% believe that this is possible. Another 23% tend to think that the delayed payments are hardly possible, for 15% of respondents they are impossible.


The share of Russians whose salaries were reduced has grown almost twice since December last year - from 8% to 14%. 9% of respondents are confident that this will affect them as well, 35% believe that this is quite possible. The share of Russians who think that delayed payments of salaries are hardly possible has declined from 26% to 19%. Almost every fifth (18%) thinks that this is virtually impossible.


The share of those who do not believe that the enterprise they work at can go out of business is decreasing: from 42% in October last year to 35% in January this year. 27% of respondents believe that such situation is hardly possible. 23% of our citizens consider this is possible, and every twentieth (5%) is confident that this will happen. Finally, 2% of Russians have already faced such situation.


The share of Russians who think the loss of job is possible has fallen dramatically - from 48% in December to 27% in January this year. 3% are sure that they will lose their job in the next two to three months. On the contrary, the share of those who think the loss of job is hardly possible is growing up (from 13% to 35%). More than every fourth (26%) believe that this is almost impossible (30% in December).


The part of Russians who are confident that they would easily find a job equal to the one they have now, is decreasing: every fourth (26%) who thought so in October versus every tenth (10%) who think so in January. 26% consider it will cost them some efforts to find an equal job (30% in October-December last year). The number of Russians who think that it will be extremely difficult to find new job has risen from 25% to 36% since autumn of the previous year. The share of those who are pessimistic about the job search went up - from 8% in October to 17% in January. 10% are undecided.


Half of Russians (50%) know people who lost their jobs personally - 14% believe that there are a lot of them, 36% say there are 2 or 3 people (among those they know). Those who gave this answer in October were 35% (10% and 25% respectively). The share of those who do not have the unemployed among their friends and relatives has decreased - from 62% in October to 44% in January.  


The most acceptable option for Russians in case they lose their jobs - informal employment (the share of these respondents has increased almost twice since January 2007 - from 14% to 27%). The other 24% are eager to go through retraining for new qualification (19% in March last year). 21% agree to be hired at another location, but according to the qualifications they gained.  The share of those who accept to have casual earnings has increased three times since 2007 (from 7% to 20%). 18% would be satisfied with lower salary (only 5% in March last year), 16% - with less qualified job position (8% in March 2008).   The other 14% can accept to be self-employed or to be an entrepreneur, 12% are ready to get job in the other place of the country (another city, etc...- 8% in January 2007), 7% - to work abroad. The share of those who think this is not acceptable for them decreased - from 21% in March last year to 10% in January this year. 12% were undecided.


Russians increasingly think that it is a bad time for borrowing (the share of such respondents has grown up from 58% to 71% since last year). 13%, on the contrary, believe that   borrowing money from the bank currently is possible. 17% were undecided.  


Russians are more optimistic about major purchases: more than third of respondents think that it is time to make them (35%); 44%, in turn, opposed this view. 20% were undecided.


The initiative Russian opinion poll was conducted on January 17-18 and 24-25, 2009. 1600 respondents were interviewed at 140 sampling points in 42 regions of Russia.

The margin of error does not exceed 3.4%.



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