Statistics from 2016 tax declarations reveal a major drop in Greek earnings, with two out of three households declaring incomes of below 1,000 euros a month. In the last five years the share of those households has risen from 49 to 64.11 percent, a figure that looks likely to rise.
Wealthy households are becoming an endangered species in the records of the Finance Ministry. Just 132,000 households declared a family income of more than 50,000 euros in 2016, out of a total of 6.2 million households. In 2011 the number of households with an income of 50,000 euros or above had come to 283,433, out of a total of 5.68 million households. That means some 150,000 households slipped out of the wealthy category within those five years, and the state missed out on taxable income of 9.25 billion euros from them alone.
Likewise, households with incomes of more than 100,000 euros fell from 38,549 in 2011 to about 25,000 last year. However, this is not just due to the contraction of incomes and the country’s gross domestic product, but also because of the high tax rates that have led some to find ways to dodge taxation.
The middle classes have come under huge pressure. Family incomes of between 20,000 and 50,000 euros per year were only found in 955,000 declarations last year, against 1.35 million in 2011. The total income of this category has plummeted from 41.4 billion to 28.2 billion in five years.