Singapore – March 20, 2017 Although 2016 was a year of great socio-political flux, the latest Mastercard Well-Being Index revealed that people in Asia Pacific remain optimistic towards their overall well-being (62.1), with those in emerging markets (65.5), led by India, Philippines and Indonesia, showing higher resilience and satisfaction than others in developed markets (56.7).

The Mastercard Well-Being Index surveyed 9,123 people across Asia Pacific about their economic, social and financial outlook, covering four key components: Work and Finances, Safety from Threats, Personal and Work Satisfaction and Personal Well-Being.

Leading the region with an overall well-being Index score of 75.0 is India, the only market to have reached very optimistic level in this survey series’ history. India’s optimism is likely driven by consumers’ upbeat sentiment over the robust pace of economic growth and stable macroeconomic fundamentals, as well as their ability to deal with stress and challenges. Other optimistic markets include Philippines (73.0) at second place and Indonesia (71.4) in third.

Conversely, Asia’s developed economies have struggled to advance out of neutral territory, owing to deep entrenchment in a culture of overtime and high levels of work-related stress. Japan (50.4) and Korea (52.1) rank the lowest for overall well-being which is reflected in consumers’ consistently downbeat sentiment towards their personal well-being related to family stress, work stress, financial stress and health.

According to the study, it seems that a stress-free life with strong work-life balance is key to happiness. Overall, out of the four components, consumers in the region felt most satisfied with their personal and work life (65.5), buoyed by strong fulfilment amongst consumers in emerging markets such as India (83.0), Philippines (78.2), Myanmar (75.4), Vietnam (72.7), China (71.3), Indonesia (71.1) and Thailand (70.2).

Georgette Tan, senior vice president, Communications, Asia Pacific, Mastercard said, “Findings from this study show that consumers’ outlook on their overall well-being is invariably shaped by the reality of their everyday lives, as well as social, economic and political conditions. In addition, we also see that strong opportunities for growth can imbue optimism and hope for the future as exemplified by Asia’s emerging economies like India, China and Indonesia, where their higher well-being scores correlate with growing GDP rates. Such insights are crucial to Mastercard’s work in the region where we’re committed to driving inclusive growth. It gives us a holistic view that complements economic activity, and provides us with a clearer understanding of the progress to be made.”

Across the board, of all four components, people in Asia Pacific were most concerned about their safety from threats (57.6), with those in Myanmar (43.5), Bangladesh (46.6) and Japan (46.9) having felt the most vulnerable. This apprehension was caused mainly by fear of cybercrimes (54.0) and financial crimes (55.0). On the other hand, people in emerging markets, led by India (78.7), Philippines (64.5) and Indonesia (64.3) are the least concerned about their overall safety.

Overall Well-Being Index, Country Scores:

1. India 75.0 6. Thailand 66.1 11. Hong Kong 58.6 16. Taiwan 54.3
2. Philippines 73.0 7. Myanmar 64.6 12. Singapore 58.6 17. Korea 52.1
3. Indonesia 71.4 8. Cambodia 63.9 13. Sri Lanka 56.6 18. Japan 50.4
4. Vietnam 71.4 9. New Zealand 63.5 14. Bangladesh 55.5
5. China 68.2 10. Australia 59.6 15. Malaysia 54.9

 

Average for AP 62.1
Average for Developed AP 56.7
Average for Emerging AP 65.5


Well-Being Index
– Work & Finances Component, Country Scores:

1. Vietnam 81.5 6. New Zealand 71.7 11. Australia 60.4 16. Singapore 52.7
2. Philippines 79.2 7. Myanmar 66.9 12. Japan 59.5 17. Malaysia 51.9
3. Indonesia 77.2 8. Thailand 65.9 13. India 56.0 18. Sri Lanka 50.3
4. China 75.3 9. Bangladesh 65.0 14. Korea 53.9
5. Cambodia 71.8 10. Hong Kong 61.3 15. Taiwan 52.9

 

Average for AP 64.1
Average for Developed AP 58.9
Average for Emerging AP 67.3


Well-Being Index – Safety from Threats Component, Country Scores:

1. India 78.7 6. Thailand 63.1 11. Cambodia 56.8 16. Japan 46.9
2. Philippines 64.5 7. China 60.3 12. Taiwan 55.5 17. Bangladesh 46.6
3. Indonesia 64.3 8. Australia 59.8 13. Sri Lanka 51.8 18. Myanmar 43.5
4. Singapore 64.2 9. Vietnam 59.4 14. South Korea 50.9
5. New Zealand 63.4 10. Hong Kong 57.9 15. Malaysia 48.5

 

Average for AP 57.6
Average for Developed AP 56.9
Average for Emerging AP 57.9


Well-Being Index – Satisfaction Component, Country Scores:

1. India 83.0 6. Indonesia 71.1 11. Sri Lanka 61.7 16. Taiwan 56.8
2. Philippines 78.2 7. Thailand 70.2 12. Singapore 60.8 17. South Korea 55.7
3. Myanmar 75.4 8. Cambodia 68.3 13. Malaysia 60.4 18. Japan 49.7
4. Vietnam 72.7 9. New Zealand 65.4 14. Hong Kong 59.2
5. China 71.3 10. Australia 62.7 15. Bangladesh 57.1

 

Average for AP 65.5
Average for Developed AP 58.6
Average for Emerging AP 69.9


Well-Being Index – Personal Well-Being Component, Country Scores:

1. India 82.6 6. China 65.7 11. Singapore 56.7 16. Taiwan 52.2
2. Indonesia 73.2 7. Thailand 65 12. Hong Kong 56.3 17. South Korea 47.9
3. Myanmar 72.6 8. Sri Lanka 62.7 13. Australia 55.2 18. Japan 45.7
4. Vietnam 72 9. Malaysia 59 14. New Zealand 53.6
5. Philippines 70.1 10. Cambodia 58.9 15. Bangladesh 53.4

 

Average for AP 61.3
Average for Developed AP 52.5
Average for Emerging AP 66.8


Methodology

The latest Mastercard Well-Being Index is based on a survey conducted between November 2016 and December 2016 on 9,123 consumers aged 18 – 64 in 18 Asia Pacific countries.

Consumers were asked 17 questions pertaining to four components. The results of their responses were converted into sub-indexes, which were subsequently averaged to form the Mastercard Well-Being Index score. The scores range from 0 – 100 where 0 represents the maximum negative response, 100 represents the maximum positive response and 50 represents neutrality.

Category Question Subject Questions Asked
Work and Finances Regular Income Do you expect your regular income including bonuses and fringe benefits to increase, remain same or worse over the next 6 months?
Employment Do you expect the employment situation to be better, remain the same or worse over the next 6 months?
Keeping Up With Bills I often have problems keeping up with my bills and credit commitments
Saving For Big Purchases I often have problems with setting money aside for big purchases
Safety from Threats Violent Crime I feel safe from the threat of violent crime and assault in my country.
Financial Crime I feel safe from the threat of financial crime like snatch thefts and burglary in my country.
Cyber Crime I feel safe from the threat of cybercrime and identity theft in my country.
Disease Outbreak I feel safe from a serious disease outbreak in my country.
Natural Disaster/Pollution I do not feel that my personal sense of well-being is compromised by environmental problems like pollution, flooding and natural disasters.
Satisfaction Present Life Situation I am completely satisfied with my life situation today
5 year Life Situation Expectation I anticipate that my life situation will be better than it is today in 5 years.
Work-Life Balance I am satisfied with the balance between the time I spend on my paid work/school and the time spend on other aspects of my life.
Work/Role in Life Satisfaction I am satisfied with the work I do/ being a student (role at home if not working or studying)
Personal Well Being Family Stress I have had no emotional/mental stress level from family obligations/family life over the past year.
Work Stress I have had no emotional/ mental stress level from work/school over the past year.
Health My health is at its best condition.
Financial Stress I have had no financial stress level in the past year.


Mastercard and its Suite of Research Properties

The Mastercard Index suite in Asia Pacific includes the long-running Mastercard Index of Consumer Confidence, as well as the Mastercard Index of Women’s AdvancementMastercard Index of Financial Literacy, and the Mastercard Index of Global Destination Cities. In addition to the indices, Mastercard’s research properties also include a range of consumer surveys including Online ShoppingEthical Spending and a series on Consumer Purchasing Priorities (covering TravelDining & EntertainmentEducationMoney Management, Luxury and General Shopping).

About Mastercard

Mastercard (NYSE: MA), www.mastercard.com, is a technology company in the global payments industry.  We operate the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories.  Mastercard products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone.  Follow us on Twitter @MastercardAP and @MastercardNews, join the discussion on the Beyond the Transaction Blog and subscribe for the latest news on the Engagement Bureau.

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