Some 590,000 people living in Switzerland were below the poverty threshold in 2012, roughly the same number as in the previous year, according to official statistics. That corresponds to 7.7% of all Swiss households..
The worst affected groups include people living in households with no income earners (20.2%) poverty rate among this group), single adults (17.9%), single parents (16.5%) and people with no higher educational qualifications ( 13.9%).
Some 130,000 people classed as living in the poverty trap were in employment in 2012.
The poverty threshold has been set at single people earning less than CHF2,200 ($2,460) per month or a household comprising two adults and two children with an income of less than CHF4,050.
Switzerland’s poverty rate barely moved from 7.4% recorded in 2011, but has dropped 1.6% since records were first started in 2007, according to the Federal Statistical Office.
Using international measurements of poverty, Switzerland’s rate of 15.9% is below that of the European Union (16.9%). And the rate of extreme poverty is significantly less in Switzerland (0.8%) than the EU (9.9%).
swissinfo.ch and agencies