Finland's population enjoys one of the highest living standards in the world. However, this does not mean that poverty is eliminated in the country.
According to the latest data published by Statistics Finland, there are still 640,000 people belonging to households at risk of poverty. This is 11.8% of the household population.
Figures show that the number and share of people at risk of poverty fell slightly from the previous year, when 654,000 people were at risk of poverty. The at-risk-of-poverty rate has varied in the past five years on both sides of 12%, the Finnish statistical office remarks.Source: Statistics Finland.
Below 60% of the median income
A person is considered to be at risk of poverty when his income is below 60% of the country's median income. So, the development depends not only on the situation of low-income households, but also on the development of the median income.
In 2018, the threshold for one-person households was 14,970 euros per year, that is, 1,250 euros per month. Below this level, the person was considered at risk of poverty.
Household's median income from which the at-risk-of-poverty threshold is counted was 24,950 euros in 2018.
The relative risk of poverty has varied in the past ten years and affected between 623,000 and 728,000 people in Finland.
Most common among young people
The at-risk-of-poverty rate of persons at retirement age has grown in the past few years. The growth of risk of poverty of elderly people comes mostly from single-person households and those aged 65 to 74.
Around every tenth of persons aged 65 to 74 was at risk of poverty in 2018, that is, fewer than average for the population. Good 21% of persons aged 75 or over were at risk of poverty.
The risk of poverty has in turn decreased on a whole slightly among working-age people aged 18 to 64. However, being at risk of poverty is most common among young people aged 18 to 24: around every fourth of them is a member of a household at risk of poverty.
Among working-age people, being at risk of poverty is experienced most by unemployed persons of whom around 40% were at risk of poverty in 2018, and students of whom nearly 29% were at risk of poverty.
Children's risk of poverty has in recent years been slightly over 10%, on average, says Statistics Finland.