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Nearly Half of Filipino Families Say They are Poor: SWS

Poverty during the pandemic.
by Arianne Merez
Dec 14, 2020
Photo/s: Jerome Ascano

Nearly half of Filipino families view themselves as poor, results of a Social Weather Stations survey released Monday showed, as the COVID-19 pandemic upended lives and dragged down the economy.

Forty-eight percent of families in the Nov. 21 to 25 poll rated themselves as poor, which translates to around 12 million families, the SWS said. Another 36% said they were feeling "borderline poor" and 16% reported feeling "not poor."

SWS said of the estimated 12 million "poor" families in November 2020, 2 million were "newly poor", 1.3 million were "usually poor" and 8.6 million were "always poor."

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Despite the shrinking of the economy this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, SWS said the number of families who consider themselves poor was lower at 48% compared to the 54% that felt poor in December last year.

The borderline-poor however grew by 13 points to 36%  from 23% last year.


For the Poor, Hunger is More Fearsome Than COVID

The monthly family budget

Nationally, SWS said families surveyed reported that they needed at least P12,000 per month  for home expenses to consider themselves "not poor."

On average, families reported that they lack P5,000 to meet the needed amount according to SWS.

In terms of food budget, families around the country on average said they need at least P7,000 in order not to consider their food as poor.

Families surveyed however reported on average that they lack P3,000 to meet the minimum amount.

Some 1,500 adults were surveyed by SWS using face-to-face interviews for this survey which has a ±2.5% sampling margin error for national percentage.

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