Welfare changes in households in 2nd quarter of 2010
Surveys* on welfare of households carried out by the Central Statistical Bureau (CSB) show that situation in households has improved slightly. In the 1st quarter 75% of the respondents said that during the last 12 months economic situation in their household has worsened (71% in rural areas and 76% in urban areas), but in 2nd quarter only 66% of the respondents mentioned that situation in their household had become worse (58% in rural areas and 70% in urban areas). Main reasons mentioned 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; delay of wages and salaries, etc. reasons.
But in 14% of the households where members were looking for a job someone found it ( in 1st quarter 11%), 8% of the households were some of the members had own business admitted that demand for the goods or services produced in his/her enterprise has increased (in 1st quarter 7%).
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, but approximately four fifths (81%) of the households admitted that there are no such. If household had such savings than, according to the survey results, during the last 12 months in 51% of the households they have reduced, but about a half of the households (47%) admit that, in case when these savings are the only source of resources, they would be a sufficient amount for one to four months.
To improve the economic situation households receive aid from state and local government, as well as from relatives, friends, etc.
According to the survey data, 11% of the households received aid from state and local governments (10% in 1st quarter).
During the last 12 months 12% of the households received financial aid from relatives or friends in Latvia, but 5% of the households had financial aid from relatives or friends living abroad.
CSB will continue to carry out such survey every quarter and will inform on the survey results on regular basis.
* To obtain information on household welfare in 2nd quarter of 2010 CSB continued to carry out a survey, which was developed with a support of the experts from World Bank. During a survey one of the household members was asked on changes of the economic situation household during the last 12 months. In 2nd quarter of 2010 in the survey information from 3.5 thousand households was acquired.
Prepared by the Employment Statistics Section