Working poor down over the decade

The number of people classified as working poor in Switzerland decreased from five per cent to 4.4 per cent from 2000 to 2007.

This content was published on April 21, 2009 - 14:41

The Federal Statistics Office on Tuesday attributed the decrease to a favourable economy during that period and a declining unemployment rate, adding that the rate was not an immediate indicator of the economic climate.

The rate among women stood at 4.1 per cent, authorities said, while 4.6 per cent of men were classified as working poor.

The poverty line is defined as around SFr2,200 ($2,000) net income a month for a single person and SFr4,650 for a couple with two children.

People aged 30-39 had the highest rate – 5.8 per cent – while 2.8 per cent of people aged 50-59 were considered working poor.

Almost ten per cent of single parents fell into the category, as did 18 per cent of couples with three or more children.

Only 3.3 per cent of Swiss nationals were considered working poor, while 7.9 per cent of non-citizens fit the definition.

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