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Mixed Feelings Towards Greece in the Five Largest European Countries Majority in Italy believe Greece should stay in the eurozone, while majority in Germany do not; other countries show more mixed feelings

NEW YORK, Sept. 28, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- A recent Financial Times/Harris Poll in the five largest European countries looks at the issue of Greece – how it impacts the eurozone, whether other European countries should be doing more to help it and if the bailout money will ever be repaid – and finds there are conflicting feelings in Western Europe on these issues.

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Specifically, the largest looming question is whether Greece should even remain part of the eurozone. Almost three in five Italians (59%) and almost half of Spaniards (45%) believe they should, while over half  of Germans (54%) believe they should not. Those in France and Great Britain are more divided: two in five French adults (39%) believe Greece should stay a member of the eurozone, while one-third (32%) believe they should not and three in ten (29%) are not sure. In Great Britain, one-third (33%) believe Greece should not remain a member and one-quarter (24%) believe they should, while the strongest (43%) are not sure.

These are some of the findings of a Financial Times/Harris Poll conducted online by Harris Interactive® among 5,134 adults aged 16-64 within France (1,031), Germany (1,030), Great Britain (1,048), Spain (1,024), and adults aged 18-64 in Italy (1,001), between August 14 and 23, 2012.

Some other findings of this survey include:

  • When it comes to doing more to help Greece remain in the eurozone, almost half of Spaniards (46%) and more than two in five Italians (43%) agree that the other eurozone members should do more to help Greece remain. Almost half of Germans (47%) and more than two in five French adults (43%) disagree with this view and more than two in five British adults (42%) neither agree nor disagree;
  • Over three-quarters of Italians (77%) and over half of Spaniards (57%) are at least somewhat confident that Greece will ever repay its bailout loans, but the other three countries do not share in this confidence. Three-quarters of Germans (74%), two-thirds of Britons (67%), and nearly two-thirds of French adults (64%) are not at all confident Greece will ever repay its loans;
  • There is somewhat more confidence that Greece will make economic reforms to avoid needing support down the road. Almost nine in ten Italians (88%), seven in ten Spaniards (70%), and just over half of Germans (51%) are at least somewhat confident that Greece will reform its economy to ensure that it does not need EU financial support in the future. French adults are divided, with half (50%) saying they are at least somewhat confident this will occur and half (50%) not at all confident. In Great Britain, over half (56%) are not at all confident;
  • Looking more broadly at the debt crisis, majorities of adults in all five countries (83% Italy, 70% Germany, 69% France, 63% Spain, and 56% Great Britain) are at least somewhat confident that eurozone policy-makers will address the debt crisis in the eurozone; and,
  • One way to address the European debt crisis is with austerity measures; however, majorities in Spain (64%), Italy (62%), France (61%), and Germany (58%) believe that austerity measures actually have a negative impact on solving the debt crisis in Europe. In Great Britain, opinions are divided. Three in ten Britons (29%) believe these measures have a negative impact, while one-quarter believe they have a positive impact (25%) or no impact (26%), and one in five (20%) are not sure what impact they have. 

So What?

Legends speak of the Greek gods ruling the world from the top of Mount Olympus. Today, the Greek economy is actually playing a similarly influential role in the world, as financial markets can rise or tumble based on how it looks like Greece will fare. If they look like they are bouncing back from their debt crisis, markets rise. Unfortunately, it has instead been tumbling, as it increasingly seems as if the crisis cannot be resolved. As part of the eurozone, Greece has been able to turn to fellow EU members for assistance; however, that assistance seems to be creating resentment among some of the other countries. If they need more help in the future, will the other EU member countries be there to help them? If left up to the citizens of Germany, France and Great Britain, the answer may lean towards no.

TABLE 1
GREEK EXIT
"As it currently stands, do you believe that Greece should remain a member of the eurozone?"

Base: All EU adults in five countries


Great

Britain

France

Italy

Spain

Germany

%

%

%

%

%

Yes

24%

39%

59%

45%

27%

No

33%

32%

21%

27%

54%

Not sure

43%

29%

20%

28%

19%

Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding

 


TABLE 2
HELP TO GREECE
"Some argue that other eurozone members should do more to help Greece remain in the eurozone.
To what extent do you agree or disagree with this view?"

Base: All EU adults in five countries


Great

Britain

France

Italy

Spain

Germany

%

%

%

%

%

Agree (NET)

21%

25%

43%

46%

26%

Strongly agree

6%

5%

11%

20%

7%

Somewhat agree

15%

20%

32%

26%

18%

Neither agree nor disagree

42%

33%

30%

30%

28%

Disagree (NET)

37%

43%

27%

24%

47%

Somewhat disagree

24%

25%

17%

12%

22%

Strongly disagree

13%

18%

10%

11%

25%

Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding

 

TABLE 3
CONFIDENCE IN EUROPE'S AND GREECE'S ABILITY TO OVERCOME THE DEBT CRISIS
"How confident are you, if at all, that...?"
Greece will ever repay its bailout loans.

Base: All EU adults in five countries


Great

Britain

France

Italy

Spain

Germany

%

%

%

%

%

At least somewhat confident (NET)

33%

36%

77%

57%

26%

Very/Extremely confident (NET)

5%

1%

4%

4%

3%

Extremely confident

2%

0

1%

1%

0

Very confident

3%

1%

3%

3%

2%

Confident

10%

12%

19%

21%

9%

Somewhat confident

18%

22%

54%

32%

15%

Not at all confident

67%

64%

23%

43%

74%

Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding

 


TABLE 4
CONFIDENCE IN EUROPE'S AND GREECE'S ABILITY TO OVERCOME THE DEBT CRISIS
"How confident are you, if at all, that...?"
Greece will reform its economy to ensure that it does not need EU financial support in the future.

Base: All EU adults in five countries


Great

Britain

France

Italy

Spain

Germany

%

%

%

%

%

At least somewhat confident (NET)

44%

50%

88%

70%

51%

Very/Extremely confident (NET)

5%

3%

6%

6%

4%

Extremely confident

2%

1%

2%

1%

1%

Very confident

3%

2%

4%

4%

3%

Confident

11%

14%

31%

28%

16%

Somewhat confident

28%

34%

50%

37%

31%

Not at all confident

56%

50%

12%

30%

49%

Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding

 

TABLE 5
CONFIDENCE IN EUROPE'S AND GREECE'S ABILITY TO OVERCOME THE DEBT CRISIS
"How confident are you, if at all, that...?"
Eurozone policy-makers will address the debt crisis in the eurozone.

Base: All EU adults in five countries


Great

Britain

France

Italy

Spain

Germany

%

%

%

%

%

At least somewhat confident (NET)

56%

69%

83%

63%

70%

Very/Extremely confident (NET)

7%

4%

9%

7%

10%

Extremely confident

2%

1%

3%

2%

2%

Very confident

5%

3%

6%

5%

8%

Confident

15%

25%

33%

20%

24%

Somewhat confident

34%

40%

42%

36%

37%

Not at all confident

44%

31%

17%

37%

30%

Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding


TABLE 6
IMPACT OF AUSTERITY MEASURES
"What impact do you believe austerity measures have on solving the debt crisis in Europe, if any?"

Base: All EU adults in five countries and U.S. adults


Great

Britain

France

Italy

Spain

Germany

%

%

%

%

%

Positive impact (NET)

25%

14%

17%

19%

20%

Very positive impact

3%

2%

1%

4%

1%

Somewhat positive impact

21%

12%

16%

15%

18%

No impact

26%

11%

11%

11%

12%

Negative impact (NET)

29%

61%

62%

64%

58%

Somewhat negative impact

19%

35%

42%

24%

43%

Very negative impact

10%

26%

20%

40%

15%

Not sure

20%

14%

10%

6%

10%

Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding

 

Methodology

This FT/Harris Poll was conducted online by Harris Interactive among a total of 5,134 adults aged 16-64 within France (1,031), Germany (1,030), Great Britain (1,048), Spain (1,024), and adults aged 18-64 in Italy (1,001) between August 14 and 23, 2012. Figures for age, sex, education, region and Internet usage were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was used to adjust for respondents' propensity to be online.

All sample surveys and polls, whether or not they use probability sampling, are subject to multiple sources of error which are most often not possible to quantify or estimate, including sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options, and post-survey weighting and adjustments. Therefore, Harris Interactive avoids the words "margin of error" as they are misleading. All that can be calculated are different possible sampling errors with different probabilities for pure, unweighted, random samples with 100% response rates. These are only theoretical because no published polls come close to this ideal.

Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Interactive surveys. The data have been weighted to reflect the composition of the adult populations of the respective countries. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in the Harris Interactive panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.

The results of this Harris Poll may not be used in advertising, marketing or promotion without the prior written permission of Harris Interactive.

These statements conform to the principles of disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls and the British Polling Council.

The Harris Poll® #57, September 28, 2012

By Regina A. Corso, SVP, Harris Poll and Public Relations, Harris Interactive

 

About Harris Interactive

Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll® and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers proprietary solutions in the areas of market and customer insight, corporate brand and reputation strategy, and marketing, advertising, public relations and communications research. Harris possesses expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of multi-client offerings that complement our custom solutions while maximizing our client's research investment. Serving clients in more than 196 countries and territories through our North American and European offices, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our clients—stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractive.com.

Press Contact:
Corporate Communications
Harris Interactive
212-539-9600
press@harrisinteractive.com

SOURCE Harris Interactive



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