Working age poverty: Working households and individuals

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Around two-thirds (68%) of working-age adults in poverty live in a household where at least one adult is in work.

At 68% the proportion of working-age adults in poverty who are in a working household has never been higher (Households below average income (HBAI) records began in 1996/97). In 1996/97, this number was lower than 50%.

Because most working-age adults are in work, a relatively small increase in the percentage of workers in poverty has a large effect on the composition of poverty by work status.

Over the last 15 years there has been a slow creep upward of the rate of workers in poverty. In 2005/06, 11% of workers were in poverty - this number now stands at 13%. Part-time worker poverty rates are more than double the poverty rates of full-time workers (23% compared with 10%)

This suggests that work is becoming less effective at warding off poverty.

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The data presented here is from our 2022 UK Poverty report, setting out the trends and impacts of poverty across the UK. Read the full report at UK Poverty 2022.