Life satisfaction ratio tops 70%

JIJI

A recent government poll found 71 percent of Japanese are satisfied or somewhat satisfied with their lives, up 3.7 percent from the previous year and topping 70 percent for the first time in 18 years.

The survey, conducted by the Cabinet Office from June 6 to 23, covered some 6,080 people aged 20 or older nationwide. The survey has been carried out almost every year since 1958.

By category, the percentage of respondents who are satisfied or somewhat satisfied with their assets and savings stood at 42.5 percent. The proportion was at 47.9 percent for income. The readings for the two categories were lower than the proportions of those who expressed dissatisfaction, but were up 5.1 points and 3.7 points, respectively, from the survey last year when the Democratic Party of Japan was in power.

Improvements in economic conditions such as a recovery in stock prices, the yen’s slide against other major currencies and a rise in the job-openings-to-seekers ratio were believed to be behind the rosy results, a Cabinet Office official said.

Asked what areas the Liberal Democratic Party-led government should focus on, 59.6 percent of respondents cited economic stimulus measures, down 6.9 points, and 42.3 percent called for measures to tackle employment issues, down 5 percent.

Meanwhile, 34.7 percent of respondents, up 4.4 points, said the government should beef up efforts on the diplomatic front and in international cooperation.