UPDATE 1-Poll shows slide in support for Greek government

* Ruling Socialists still lead conservatives by 2 points

* Nearly 76 percent say worried about unemployment

* 21 pct would cast blank or invalid vote

(adds support for other parties, details)

ATHENS, Dec 31 (BestGrowthStock) – Public support for Greece’s
ruling socialists has dropped markedly over the past months as
austerity bites, but they are still more popular than the
conservative opposition, a poll showed on Friday.

Policies to shore up public finances under the terms of an
EU/IMF bailout, including public sector pay cuts and higher
taxes, have taken a toll on the economy, with record high
unemployment rates and a deepening recession.

The PASOK socialist party would lead with 22.2 percent if
elections were held now, the Kappa Research survey for Sunday’s
To Vima newspaper showed, whereas it gathered 29.1 percent of
voting intentions in a previous poll by the same agency in
mid-September. [ID:nLDE68A08Z]

The main opposition party, the conservative New Democracy,
has failed to attract disgruntled voters and has lost just over
1 percentage point over the same period to stand now at 20.2
percent, the poll showed.

The support lost by the socialists and New Democracy went to
small leftist parties, a new party created by former
conservative foreign minister Dora Bakoyanni, and increased the
ranks of the undecided.

Some 21.2 percent of those polled would cast a blank or
invalid ballot.

The poll, carried out on Dec. 21-24 nationwide, also showed
that 61 percent of respondents are against leaving the euro,
with 64.5 percent saying membership in the European Union has
benefited the country.

Unemployment and the prospect of businesses shutting down
was the top worry among respondents (75.8 percent), followed by
concerns over serious pay cuts (57.9 percent.)

The ruling PASOK party came to power in October last year
and the government does not need to call elections before the
second half of 2013.

UPDATE 1-Poll shows slide in support for Greek government