According to Gallup International’s 41st Annual Global End of the Year Survey, the Philippines is the third happiest country in the world with a net score of +84. 

Philippines among the happiest, most optimistic countries in the world — report
(philstar.com) - January 2, 2018 - 11:38am

MANILA, Philippines — Despite the issues that hounded and the tragedies that struck the nation in 2017, the Philippines is still one of the happiest and most optimistic countries in the world, the recent survey by a US-based polling firm showed.

According to Gallup International’s 41st Annual Global End of the Year Survey, the Philippines is the third happiest country in the world with a net score of +84.

Eighty-six percent of Filipinos answered they were happy, two percent answered they were unhappy, and 10 percent answered they were neither happy nor unhappy to the question: “In general, do you personally feel very happy, happy, neither happy nor unhappy, unhappy or very unhappy about your life?”

Last 2016, the country shared the second place with China with a net score of +79.

The Philippines earlier ranked 72nd out of the 155 countries in the World Happiness Report for 2017, according to the data released by the Sustainable Development Solution Network for the United Nations last March. 

Fiji remained the happiest place in the world according to the Gallup poll (+92) out of the 55 countries surveyed followed by Colombia (+87).

Iran, on the other hand, replaced Iraq as the unhappiest country in the world last year after posting a net score of +5.

Gallup's study showed that 59 percent of the surveyed claimed they were happy—10 points lower than last year. 

"2017 was a tough year with terrorist attacks over almost each week and it may have influenced personal lives all around the world. Nevertheless, a majority in all polled countries are happy," the polling firm observed. 

READ: Philippines ranks 72nd in world happiness index

Hope index

The Philippines maintained its spot as the seventh most optimistic nation in the world last year, tying with Kosovo. Both countries recorded a net score of +67.

Forty-four percent of Filipinos said they think that 2018 will be better than 2017, four percent answered worse, and 48 percent believe this year will be the same as last year.

This is despite the spate of extrajudicial killings—including those of teenagers—linked with the government’s bloody war on drugs, the Marawi crisis that killed and displaced thousands, the attacks on constitutional bodies such as the Office of the Ombudsman and the Commission on Human Rights, and the impeachment complaint against Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno, among others.

Indonesia is the most positive nation in 2017 with a net score of +67, while Italy maintained its rank as the top most pessimistic country with a net score of -41.

Economic optimism index

Posting a net score of +32, the Philippines is once again fifth in economic index in 2017.

Forty-two percent of Filipinos said that 2018 will be a year of economic prosperity, while 10 percent believe the country will face economic difficulty this year. The remaining 46 percent answered that the country’s economy will remain the same this year.

The Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Law, which reduces personal income tax but imposes a higher tax on fuel, cars, tobacco and sugary beverages to bankroll the government’s infrastructure and development projects, finally took effect on the first day of 2018.

Nigeria ranked first in terms of economic optimism, followed by Vietnam (+55), Indonesia (+53) and India (+46).

Italy, meanwhile, consistently topped the top 10 list of pessimist countries with a net score of -50. 

Gallup noted that economic optimism in the world "has declined over the months" as the study showed that economic pessimism is two points higher than economic optimism at 28 percent. 

READ: Winners and losers: How the TRAIN law affects rich, poor Filipinos

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