MOSCOW — At a time when public anger over government corruption has led to the most widespread protests Russia has seen in years, less than half of Russians are confident in President Vladimir Putin’s efforts to rein in crooked officials, according to a survey released Tuesday.

The survey by the Washington-based Pew Research Center finds Russians generally confident in their country’s direction, enthusiastic about Moscow’s increasing say in world affairs, and increasingly sanguine about the economy. A whopping 87 percent of those surveyed said they trust Putin to represent their country’s interests on a global stage.

But approval of the job Putin is doing to eliminate corruption has fallen over the past two years, from 62 percent to 49 percent, based on face-to-face interviews with 1,002 Russians between February and April.

That time span coincides with the first of two nationwide anti-corruption protests spearheaded by opposition activist Alexei Navalny, after he alleged that Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev had illicitly acquired $1 billion in yachts, mansions and vineyards through bribes.

The anti-corruption rallies are part of a wave of dissatisfaction sweeping the country unseen since 2012.

“Our data indicate that although Russians have a high level of confidence in their president when it comes to global affairs, they nevertheless point to serious problems within their country that affect their daily life,” said Margaret Vice of the Pew Research Center. “Corruption is also Russians’ second-top concern, second only to rising prices, with almost nine in 10 saying corrupt political leaders pose a problem… .”

In recent months, Russia has seen rallies by truckers angry about road tolls collected by a firm run by the son of one of Putin’s oldest friends.

Moscow apartment owners who oppose the city’s plan to relocate as many as 1.6 million Muscovites have held several large protests. A recent Transparency International report characterized the relocation as a gift to Russia’s “construction lobby.”