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MANILA, Philippines – Nearly half of Filipino families reported feeling poor at the end of the third quarter of 2023, survey conducted by the Social Weather Stations (SWS) showed.
The SWS survey, which took place from September 28 to October 1, showed that 48% of Filipino families described themselves as “mahirap” (poor), while 27% considered themselves borderline poor. A minority, constituting 25%, rated themselves as “hindi mahirap” (not poor).
This represents a slight increase, accounting for a margin of error of +/-2.8%, from the 45% of families who perceived themselves as poor in the second-quarter survey released in July 2023.
Among the self-rated poor, approximately 6.6% of these families are classified as “newly poor,” having previously been categorized as “not poor” or “borderline” in the past.
SWS estimated that this equates to 13.2 million families self-identifying as poor, with 1.8 million of them being newly categorized as such.
Following the survey, the Philippines reported a second consecutive month of increased inflation, reaching 6.1%. Notably, the price of rice, a staple food in Filipino households, experienced a 14-year-high inflation rate of 17.9%.
According to SWS, the 3-point increase in the nationwide self-rated poor figure between June 2023 and September 2023 can be attributed to rises in almost all regions, particularly in Mindanao, combined with a decline in Balance Luzon (outside Metro Manila).
Mindanao saw the most significant increase in self-rated poor households, rising to 71% in September, compared to 54% recorded in the June survey.
Metro Manila witnessed a slight rise in self-rated poor households, going from 23% to 40%, while Balance Luzon decreased slightly to 35% in September, down from 38% in June.
In the Visayas, self-rated poor households experienced a marginal increase from 57% to 59%.
Nationally, the percentage of self-rated food-poor families also saw a slight increase, going from 34% in June to 35% in September. The majority of this increase came from self-rated food-poor households in Mindanao, which rose from 40% in June to 51% in September. Conversely, it dropped slightly in Metro Manila from 32% to 29%, as well as in Balance Luzon, from 28% to 24%, and in the Visayas, from 42% to 39%.
The Third Quarter 2023 Social Weather Survey, conducted from September 28 to October 1, 2023, involved face-to-face interviews with 1,200 adults aged 18 and older nationwide. This sample included 300 participants from each of the following regions: Metro Manila, Balance Luzon, the Visayas, and Mindanao. The sampling error margins are ±2.8% for national figures and ±5.7% for Metro Manila, Balance Luzon, the Visayas, and Mindanao.
Read the full survey here. – Rappler.com