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There are spheres that concern families and individuals and that, beyond the economic dimensions, involve the personal perception and transversal aspects such as social cohesion and the well-being of the population. The indicators shown in this section allow to describe them. The Istat's magnifying glass on the socio-economic situation highlights data showing, at a regional and European level, a strong association with the territory, the family structure, the education level and the participation in the Labour market.
In 2018, the mean monthly consumption expenditure for households residing in Italy was 2,571 euros. Even though it was growing for the fifth consecutive year, it remained below the level of 2011 (2,640 euros). Households spent, on average, 462 euros per month on food and non-alcoholic beverages (18% out of total consumption expenditure). Instead, expenditure on non-food was 2,110 euros per month (82% of the total). The most significant share was on housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels, minor and major maintenance and repair.
In 2018 absolute poverty concerned 7.0% of resident households (over one million 821 thousand households) and 8.4% of resident persons (over 5 million people). It was more frequent among large households (it concerns 8.9% of households with four components and 19.6% of those with 5 and more). The incidence increased, compared to 2017, among single-parent households (from 9.1% to 11.0%). About 725 thousand households with children were in absolute poverty, and they represent 11.3% of the total households with children. Non national citizens in absolute poverty were over one million and 500 thousand with an incidence of 30.3% (among national citizens, 6.4% were in absolute poverty). The situation was particularly critical for households in absolute poverty living in rented houses (they were almost 850 thousand and they represented 46.6% of all the households living in absolute poverty). In 2018 households in relative poverty were just over 3 million (11.8%), formed by 9 million people (15.0% of the total resident population).
In 2017, in Italy the average household net income (excluding imputed rents) was 31,393 euros, about 2,616 euros per month. Since the distribution of household income is asymmetric, the majority of households has an income level lower than the average. Looking at the median value, i.e. the income level that divides households in two groups of equal size, half of Italian households had an income not higher than 25,426 euros (2,119 euros per month).
In 2019 the share of people who were fairly satisfied with their economic situation was 56.5%, increasing compared to the previous year.
In 2018 households residing in the Centre and in the North spent, on average, 2,799 euros, 718 euros more than households in the South and in the Islands.
Lombardia, Valle d’Aosta/Vallée d’Aoste and Trentino-Alto Adige/Sudtirol were the Regions with the highest mean monthly consumption expenditure (about 3,000 euros per month); Calabria, Sicilia and Puglia were the regions with the lowest expenditure levels (about 2,000 euros per month). The highest share on food and non-alcoholic beverages was in the South and in the Islands (22.4%) while the lowest was in the North-East area (16.0%).
The incidence of households in absolute poverty was confirmed to be significantly higher in the South and Islands (10%) than in other areas (6.1% in the North-West and 5.3% in the North-East and in the Centre). Households living in the metropolitan areas of the North, South and Islands showed greater signs of difficulties (the incidence was 7.0% in the North and 13.6% in the South and Islands), than those who lived in medium and small municipalities; in the Centre, on the other hand, the central municipalities of the metropolitan areas had a lower absolute poverty incidence than the other type of municipalities. Between 2017 and 2018, relative poverty worsened in the North (from 5.9% to 6.6%) and, in particular, in the North-East (from 5.5% to 6.6%), while there was an opposite dynamic in the South and the Islands (from 24.7% to 22.1%) even though its values were above the national average.
In 2017, the median net household income showed a diversified regional distribution: the Autonomous Province of Bolzano/Bozen continued to record the highest income value (equal to 31,882 euros, approximately 2,657 euros per month), with over 12,903 euros difference compared to Sicilia which, on the other hand, ranked last with regard to this indicator (18,979 euro per year, equal to 1,582 euros per month). The regions with the highest income concentration were Sicilia and Campania, which had Gini coefficient value equal to 0.360 and 0.358 respectively; conversely, a greater uniformity in the income distribution was recorded in the Northern Regions, in particular in Friuli-Venezia Giulia (0.276) and Valle d'Aosta/Vallée d'Aoste (0.265).
In 2018, the amount of individuals in households in conditions of severe material deprivation in Sicilia and Campania were more than one million; this means respectively 20.9% and 20.2% of the population living in these regions. The lowest percentages were found in Trentino-Alto-Adige/Sudtirol (value equal to 2.2% and corresponding to over 23,000 individuals) and in the Autonomous Province of Bolzano/Bozen (value equal to 2.8% and corresponding to approximately 15,000 individuals). The greatest territorial gap was between the South and Islands and the North-East. In fact, in the South and in the Islands the 16.7% of the population was living in conditions of severe material deprivation (corresponding to almost 3.5 million persons) while in the North-East this value reaches only 3.2% (corresponding to more than 567 thousand individuals).
In 2019, the satisfaction with the economic situation varied significantly among the different geographical areas of the Country. In the North-East, the share of persons aged 14 and over satisfied with their economic condition reached 62.5%, while in the South and Islands it stopped at 49.3%. Despite this, compared to the previous year, the greatest growth concerned the Regions of the South and the Islands.
In 2018, the Gini inequality coefficient, calculated on the 2017 income data collected for all EU countries through the income and living conditions survey (Eu-Silc), allowed a comparison at a European level. Italy, with a value of 0.334, above the European average (0.309), was in the twenty-third position in the ranking of the EU countries. With regard to this coefficient, which values are included in the range of the extremes between 0 and 1, there were marked territorial differences among the EU countries. In fact the highest values concerned Bulgaria (0.396) and Lithuania (0.369), where the distribution of income was highly unequal, while the lowest values concerned Slovakia (0.209) and Slovenia (0.234), Countries characterized by more equal income distributions.
Bulgaria has the highest indicator of severe material deprivation in EU countries (19.9%), followed by Greece (16.2%) and Romania (14.5%). The Countries with the lowest values were Luxembourg (1.3%), Sweden (1.8%) and the Norway (2.0%). The Italian value of the index (7.4%) was 2.0 percentage points higher than the European average.