The risk of poverty decreased as work intensity increased. But in Portugal, not so much

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For households with an average work intensity, Portugal is the second EU country with the highest poverty risk, after Romania.

The higher the work intensity, the lower the at-risk-of-poverty rate. By 2021, this trend will be felt across the European Union (EU). While the at-risk-of-poverty rate for people under 65 living in households with very low work intensity was 62.2 per cent, it was only 5.4 per cent for those living in households with very high work intensity. For those living in medium-intensity households, the rate was 23.6 per cent.

Portugal was no exception, although the national at-risk-of-poverty rate is always slightly above the EU average in each of the three scenarios observed. Moreover, among households with average work intensity, Portugal is the second EU country with the highest poverty risk, according to data released by Eurostat on Monday.

In Portugal, the at-risk-of-poverty rate for people under 65 living in households with very low work intensity is 64.2% in 2021. In households with medium work intensity, the rate was 36.1%, and in households with very high work intensity, it was 7.3%.

The largest gap with respect to the Member State average is observed in the case of households with an average work intensity, where the at-risk-of-poverty rate increases by 12.5 percentage points in Portugal, making it the second country with the highest at-risk-of-poverty rate after Romania (40%). In this scenario, Finland is the country with the lowest at-risk-of-poverty rate (9.4%).

Among households with a very high work intensity, Portugal does not fare very well either, being the fourth country with the highest at-risk-of-poverty rate. While the Netherlands has a rate that does not even reach 1% (0.9%), Luxembourg (13%), Romania (9.6%), Spain (7.8%) and Portugal (7.3%) are the countries at the bottom of the EU.

Finally, for households with very low work intensity, Portugal manages to move closer to the middle of the table, this time led by Luxembourg, whose at-risk-of-poverty rate is 44.6%, a figure that contrasts with the percentage found in Croatia (80.6%).

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