The financial crisis that has bred unemployment, austerity, and economic pain across the global for nearly fives years is also battering the reputation of the system many believe to be its main cause: “free market” capitalism.
According to a new global poll by Pew Research, only half or fewer — in 11 of 21 nations surveyed — now agree with the statement that people are better off in a “free market” economy than in some other kind.
In nine of the 16 countries for which there is trend data since 2007, before the financial crisis began, support for capitalism is down, with the greatest declines in Italy (down 23 percentage points) and Spain (down 20 points).
Support for capitalism is greatest in Brazil, China, Germany and the U.S, says the report. The biggest skeptics of the free market are in Mexico and Japan.