The average annual disposable income of households worsened by 1,000 euros last year when inflation is taken into account, according to new figures from the Central Statistics Office.
The CSO said the average annual disposable income of households increased by more than €500 last year to €47,000 year-on-year.
But when inflation was taken into account, the CSO says households were actually 1,000 euros worse off with disposable income of 46,076 euros.
The CSO’s Income and Living Conditions survey (SILC) released today shows 13.1 percent of people were at risk of poverty last year, up 1.5 percent from 2021.
The CSO said those most at risk of poverty last year were those unable to work because of long-standing health problems (35.2%) and the unemployed (35.6%).
This is compared to 5.8% of those who described themselves as employed, reports RTE.
The poverty level among the elderly has increased in the last year.
The data show that the biggest year-over-year change in the poverty risk rate occurred among people 65 and older, rising from 11.9% in 2021 to 19.0% in 2022.
Last year, 5.3% of people lived in persistent poverty, an increase of 1.3% from the previous year.
The CSO said the risk of poverty, deprivation and persistent poverty is correlated with employment status, being highest among the unemployed and those with chronic health problems, reports RTE.
They said that if COVID-19 income support had been excluded, the poverty risk rate would have been 20.5%.
The “at-risk-of-poverty rate” is the share of people whose income is less than 60% of the national average, reports RTE.
The survey also found that the total income of the top 20% was four times that of the bottom 20%.
Social Justice Ireland says that 671,183 people live in poverty in Ireland, of whom 188,602 are children.
It said there are 143,633 older people living in poverty, an increase of more than 55,000 from 2021.
Dr Seán Healy, Director, Social Justice Ireland, said: “These CSO figures give us the first insight into the impact of rising energy costs and inflation on poverty in Ireland with inflation eroding any gains in household income. Today’s figures are very concerning and point to the long term economic and social impact of the cost of living crisis on households who were already struggling,” reports RTE.
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