There are 150,000 people – or 16.7 per cent of the population – at risk of poverty or social exclusion in 2022, according to the latest findings of the statistical service.

Its report, published on Thursday, into living conditions in 2022 states that 16.7 per cent live in households with disposable income below the poverty threshold. The figure also includes those in households experiencing severe material or social deprivation or lived in households with very low labour participation.

Despite the gloomy outlook the 16.7 per cent is a slight improved compared to the pervious year in which 17.3 per cent were classed as at risk. The improvement is reflected in both genders although women (18 per cent) are historically in a less favourable position when compared to men (15.3 per cent).

For reference, the overall indicator in 2015 was at 22.8 per cent.

The statistical service offered that the slight improvement appears to be linked to a decrease in the percentage of the population living in households with very low labour participation – down from 5.8 per cent to 4.1 per cent.

That covers people aged 0-64 living in households where adults aged 18-64 worked less than 20 per cent of their employment capacity during the previous year. That excludes, however, students, retirees, those receiving a pension and so on.

The risk of poverty threshold, defined as 60 per cent of the median equivalised disposable income of households, was calculated at €10,713 for a single person, and €22,498 for households with two adults and two dependent children, in the year 2022.

The corresponding threshold for 2021 was €10,011 and €21,024.

The median equivalised disposable income per person for 2022 was €17,855 compared to €16,825 in 2021.

Finally, the statistical service found that state support in the form of single-parent allowance, maternity allowance, disability allowance, and other social benefits significantly reduces the risk of poverty and social exclusion – by as much as 20 per cent.