Monday, October 20, 2008

Australia PM's popularity soars after economic stimulus

CANBERRA (Reuters) - Support for Australia's Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has risen to a record high over his centre-left government's response to international financial turmoil buffeting the economy, a new survey showed Monday.

And 58 percent of voters are optimistic about the economy over the next three years, despite fears growth will halve to around 2 percent and jobs will disappear as the world economy staggers, said a Nielsen poll published in several newspapers.

Public approval for Rudd, who last week announced a $7.2 billion (4.2 billion pound) stimulus package for low-income families, pensioners and new home buyers to steel the flagging economy, had risen 10 points to 71 percent, the poll said.

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