Number of children living in poverty grows by 300,000

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has released its data on households below average income.

In 2011/12, 17 per cent of children (2.3m) were in UK households with incomes below 60 per cent of median net disposable income before housing costs (BHC). After housing costs (AHC), this figure rose to 27 per cent (3.5m). This is unchanged on both counts from 2010/11.

Perhaps more accurate are the "absolute" figures adjusted for inflation. Under this measure, the proportion of children living in poor households rises to 20 per cent BHC and 29 per cent AHC. Worryingly, this figure has grown by two per cent from 2010/11.

"Relative" low income indicators

Before housing costsChange from 2010/11After housing costsChange from 2010/11
Children17%0%27%0%
Working age adults15%0%21%0%
Pensioners16%-1%14%-1%

"Absolute" low income indicators

Before housing costsChange from 2010/11After housing costsChange from 2010/11
Children20%2%29%2%
Working age adults17%1%22%1%
Pensioners18%0%15%1%

Source: DWP

The Labour Party press team leapt to Twitter at the news, perhaps trying to make up ground lost at Prime Minister's Questions yesterday.

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