The proportion of low-income families and households is growing year on year.
The new figures from Statistics Norway are for the living conditions of the population are for 2017. The statistics office is constantly lagging behind with new figures because it wants to be confident in the information it is delivering.
The figures tell us that the percentage of people (excluding students) with low incomes in Norway was 11.2 per cent in 2017. It was 10.8 percent in 2014 and 9.6 percent in 2011.
People with low incomes tend to be outside the labour market and are often social welfare recipients , according to other Statistics Norway figures.
There is a growing number of low-income people among old-age pensoners.
A total of 17.5 per cent of all old-age pensioners belonged to the low-income group in 2008. This was reduced to 9.3 per cent in 2017.
Among the non-insured, 12 per cent belonged to the low-income group in 2017.
In comparison, nearly 58 percent of social welfare recipients had low incomes.
Expensive for many to stay
Then, according to the EU definition, 40 per cent of immigrants from Africa and Asia living in Norway had low income in 2017.
Among the refugees in Norway, the share of low incomes is as much as 47 per cent.
Yet another group with low incomes are the long-term unemployed.
All these groups, according to Statistics Norway, are experiencing particular financial problems related to living circumstances. Many people spend a very high proportion of their low income on rent or housing debt.
Low income for many years
Quite a few people may experience financial problems for a short period of time. For this reason, Statistics Norway also calculates how many people have low incomes over a long period of time, that is, for at least three years.
This proportion remained stable for many years at around 8 per cent of the population in Norway.
In the three-year period 2015-2017, it had reached 9.6 percent of the population.
Poor families with children in Norway
In the Nordic countries, only Sweden has a higher proportion of children in low-income families than Norway. In Sweden, the proportion of children living in families with low incomes is 9 per cent, while it is in 8 per cent in Norway.
In comparison, the share of children in low-income families is only 3.6 percent in Finland and 3.7 percent in Denmark.
As far as Statistics Norway is aware, there is no recent research to explain this big difference. But one possible explanation may be that Denmark provides a much higher level of support to families with children than Norway. In Finland too, families with children have kept pace with the general increase of prosperity in society.
Another explanation may be that more immigrants have come to Sweden and Norway.
Source: forskning.no / Norway Today