May 06 2010

Poverty in Australia

According to the UN Human Poverty Index – an indication of the standard of living in rich countries – Australia ranked 14th out of 18 nations, ahead of only Britain, the US, Ireland and Italy, in 2004.

The 2009 revision is as follows:

Human Poverty Index

selected OECD countries – updated 2009

Poverty Rate Country
29.80% Italy
28.10% Mexico
15.90% Ireland
15.20% United States
14.60% United Kingdom
13.20% Hungary
12.80% Poland
12.50% Greece
12.40% Spain
12.40% Slovakia
12.20% Belgium
12.00% Australia
11.60% Japan
11.20% Canada
11.20% Luxembourg
11.20% Czech Republic
11.00% France
11.00% Austria
10.60% Switzerland
10.10% Germany
7.90% Finland
7.70% Denmark
7.40% Netherlands
6.60% Norway
6.00% Sweden

Source: http://data.un.org

Poverty Line

The international poverty line is a line set at half of the country’s median disposable income.

Median Disposable Income

2005-06, Median disposable household income per year was $56,900 source: abs.gov.au meaning that the poverty line in 2005-06 was $547 per week disposable income per household.

This was the latest figure shown by official statistics. However, looking at wage growth from 2006 to 2009, the average wages have risen by 16.3%, meaning that:

The poverty line for 2008-09 should now be about $636 per week, disposable income, or about $39,000 per year gross.

Disposable income = Total income less tax.

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