Risk of poverty: the low-income limit

For practical reasons, the notion of poverty is usually restricted to financial poverty and defined as: not having enough money to maintain a certain consumption level. A household income below a given income limit only indicates that there is a certain risk of poverty, because a household may have saved up money to fall back on in times of hardship.
In this article, the low-income limit corresponds to the poverty line. The low-income limit represents a fixed level of purchasing power and is annually adjusted, but only for price developments. The low-income limit for a couple with two children, calculated in 2011 consumer prices, corresponded to a disposable household income of 1,810 euros a month, versus 1,450 euros a month for a single-parent family with two children.

Households complying with the low-income definition need not actually be poor, but the definition guarantees that the really poor households are included.

The results are based on the Income panel survey conducted by Statistics Netherlands. Alimony for children is not registered. As a result, the disposable income of single-parent families is somewhat underestimated.