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Economic happiness hits highest point in 2017: HRI survey

All News 14:32 January 09, 2018

SEOUL, Jan. 9 (Yonhap) -- A survey measuring people's economic happiness recorded its highest score ever last year, albeit amid stronger pessimism on the prospect of the nation's economy improving this year, a private think tank said Tuesday.

Hyundai Research Institute canvassed 1,007 adults over 13 days starting Dec. 4 last year. The economic happiness index scored 45.1 points out of 100, the best since the institute began the twice-a-year survey in 2007.

The score among the self-employed, which was 28.1 points in the last survey, carried out in the latter half of 2016, rose to 41.3 points, according to the institute.

Reduced income was the biggest obstacle to economic happiness for 26.9 percent of respondents. For people in their 40s, workers, public servants and college graduates, the most serious obstacle was child rearing, the survey showed.

For those in their 20s and 30s, housing problems were the biggest hindrance.

Asked whether the country's economy will improve in 2018 over last year, 21.5 percent thought so, compared with 25.9 percent who believed things may get worse.

The survey said 30.5 percent of people see the government's labor policies, such as higher minimum wage, shortened work hours and converting of temporary workers to regular employees, as necessary actions. By group, the approval rate for such policies ran highest among people in their 20s (44.1 percent), singles (40.7 percent), workers (36.3 percent) and those making between 20 million won (US$18,751) and 40 million won a year.

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