With an aim to acquire information on welfare of households in 2010 Central Statistical Bureau (CSB) every quarter carried out a survey. Survey was developed in cooperation with the experts of the World Bank.
During the survey one person in the household was asked on changes of the economic situation in household during the last 12 months.
In 4th quarter of 2010 CSB acquired information from 3.5 thousand households, and the obtained data were extrapolated on all private households in the country.
Results acquired in the survey on welfare of households indicate that the number of negative assessments is reducing, and that, in turn, shows that situation has slightly stabilised.
Share of households indicating the worsening of welfare during last 12 months, (%)
Main reasons for welfare worsening mentioned in the households were: reduction of wages and salaries; growth of prices of food products and other goods of prime necessity; loss of job; discontinuation of job seeking, because person was discouraged to find a job etc. At the beginning of the year main reason for welfare worsening mentioned was reduction of wages and salaries, but in 3rd and 4th quarter - growth of prices of food products and other goods of prime necessity.
Finding a job still is significant problem. In the 4th quarter of the previous year in 14% of the total number of households, where members were looking for a job, someone found it (in 1st quarter – 11%, in 2nd quarter – 14%, in 3rd quarter – 16%), but 12% of the households, were some of the members had own business, admitted that during the last 12 months demand for the goods or services produced in his/her enterprise has increased ( in 1st quarter – 7%, in 2nd quarter – 8%, in 3rd quarter – 11%).
Considering the reduction of the income and current economic situation during the last 12 months residents saved in various ways.
Share of households taking measures to save, (%)
Limitation or postpone of clothing purchase
Reduction of the consumption of basic food products (potatoes, bread, pearl barley, eggs, milk etc.)
Cancelled or postponed doctor visit due to the economic reasons
Did not use medication prescribed by the doctor because of the lack of resources to purchase it
Had to delay payments of rent or public utilities
Financial savings of the household are significant to ensure the economic stability. Unfortunately, similarly as in previous quarters, also in 4th quarter approximately four fifths (80%) of the households admitted that there are no such, moreover during the year this indicator has not significantly changed.
To improve the economic situation, households receive formal (state and local government) and informal (relatives, friends, etc.) material aid.
According to the survey data, 12% of the households received aid from state and local governments. Share of households, which have received the aid, has a trend to increase slightly – from 10% in 1st quarter to 12% in 4th quarter. The share of those households, which have received material aid from relatives or friends, has not changed. Just like in two previous quarters, also in 4th quarter 12% of the households received financial aid from relatives or friends in Latvia, but 5% of the households, in turn, had financial aid from relatives or friends living abroad.
Also in 2011 CSB will continue to carry out such survey every quarter and will inform on the survey results on regular basis.
Prepared by the Employment Statistics Section
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