Two out of three households (64%) with very low labor intensity in the EU were at risk of poverty in 2020, while in Greece the corresponding percentage reached 59.6%, according to data published by the European statistical agency, Eurostat.
Work intensity reflects how much all working-age household members have worked compared to their potential. In general, the higher the labor intensity within a household (the closer people are to full-time employment), the less likely it is to be at risk of poverty. Work intensity is divided into three levels, ranging from very low, medium and very high.
In the EU, the at-risk-of-poverty rate for people aged less than 65 years living in households with very low work intensity was 64.0% in 2020. This rate ranged from 48.7% in Denmark and 49.9% in Ireland to more than 70.0% of the population in nine EU Member States. It reached a peak of 85.4% in Lithuania, followed by Romania (84.2%) and Latvia (80.6%).
2020 data for the EU shows that employment helped prevent people from falling into poverty. The at-risk-of-poverty rate was 64.0% for people aged less than 65 years living in households with very low work intensity as compared to 5.3% for people living in households with very high work intensity, while the percentage for people living in households with medium work intensity was 23.6%.
Across all EU Member States, a similar pattern was observed, meaning that at risk of poverty decreased as work intensity increased.