MANILA - Fifty-one percent of Filipino families consider themselves as poor, according to the latest survey conducted by the Social Weather Stations (SWS).
Of the 1,200 Filipino adults polled from March 26 to 29, 51 percent said they rate themselves "mahirap" or poor. Thirty-one percent said they were borderline poor, while another 19 percent said they were not poor.
The SWS said the estimated number of self-rated poor families is at 14 million in March 2023, up from the 12.9 million in December 2022.
The pollster said more Filipinos in Metro Manila and the Visayas rated themselves poor in March.
"Self-rated poor rose in Metro Manila from 32 percent to 40 percent and in the Visayas from 58 percent to 65 percent. However, it fell in Balance Luzon from 49 pct. to 43 pct. while it was statistically steady in Mindanao, moving from 59 pct. to 62 pct.," the SWS noted.
The borderline poor remained statistically steady in Metro Manila from 29 pct to 26 pct, in Balance Luzon from 30 pct to 32 pct, and in Mindanao from 30 pct. to 33 pct. But it fell in the Visayas from 34 pct to 26 pct.
The number of Filipinos who considered themselves not poor, meanwhile, rose in Balance Luzon from 20 pct to 25 pct. But it fell in Metro Manila from 39 pct to 33 pct. and in Mindanao from 11 pct. to 6 pct.,
It remained steady in the Visayas at 9 pct.
The survey also noted that of the families who rated themselves poor, 6.5 pct who were not poor 1-4 years ago. They are considered “newly poor”.
Another 6.7% were non-poor five or more years ago (“usually poor”), while 37.9 were considered “always poor."
"Of the estimated 14.0 million self-rated poor families in March 2023, 1.8 million were newly poor, 1.8 million were usually poor, and 10.4 million were always poor," SWS said.