Self-employed are wealthiest category

Self-employed households and over-65 couples were the wealthiest categories on 1 January 2009. Households are less wealthy than they were twelve months ago.

Less wealthy

On 1 January 2009, the median value of household assets was 188 thousand euro, i.e. half of households were richer, half were poorer. The average household debt was 149 thousand euro. The median household capital was 43 thousand euro, as against 47 thousand euro a year ago. The decline is mainly due to a reduction in the value of securities triggered by the economic crisis which became manifest at the end of 2008. Household debts also mounted.

Median household capital, assets and debts

Median household capital, assets and debts

Large differences by source of income

The median capital of self-employed households was 207 thousand euro on 1 January 2009. Households with incomes mainly from labour had only 37 thousand euro. The capital of pensioner households was 91 thousand euro. Households living on benefits hardly had any personal capital at all.

Median capital of households by main source of income, 1-1-2009

Median capital of households by main source of income, 1-1-2009

Older people wealthier

With 188 thousand euro, over-65 couples are the wealthiest category. One of the reasons for this is that they have largely or entirely paid off their mortgages. Singles aged 65 or older have 24 thousand euro. Under-65 singles and one-parent families lag far behind with 5 and 7 thousand euro respectively.

People with non-western background financially vulnerable

The median capital of households with a native Dutch breadwinner is 68 thousand euro, as opposed to only one thousand euro for households with a non-western breadwinner. With 18 thousand euro, households with a breadwinner with a western background perform marginally better.

Jack Claessen