The Greek economy’s scars from the decade-long financial crisis and the internal devaluation are more than obvious. Despite the slight improvement in certain income-related indexes, three in 10 households get by on an annual income of less than 10,000 euros, while pensions comprise the main source of income for almost half of all households, according to a survey published on Wednesday by the Institute of Small Enterprises of the Hellenic Confederation of Professionals, Craftsmen & Merchants (GSEVEE).
In this first survey after the completion of the bailout programs, GSEVEE found that 43.9 percent of households reported a decline in their incomes last year compared to 2017. Almost half of the households surveyed (48.9 percent) reported income stability, up from one in three (35.6 percent) in 2017, while 7.1 percent said they had seen an increase, up from just 2 percent in 2017.
At the same time, the share of households on an annual income of less than 10,000 euros remained quite high, at 31.7 percent, against 34.2 percent in 2017.
The biggest income bracket is that of households with earnings of between 10,000 and 18,000 euros per year, accounting for 39.8 percent in 2018 against 37.5 percent in 2017. This illustrates the shift of a number of households that were in the bottom bracket to a higher one; however, it also points to declines in the incomes of some households that in 2017 had been in the over-18,000 euros per annum bracket.
The bulk of Greek households find themselves in the bottom two income tiers.
More than one in eight (12.7 percent) households say their incomes do not suffice to cover their basic needs, and more than half (52.5 percent) say their monthly income is not enough to carry them through all 30 days, sufficing instead for an average of just 19 days per month.
All this is explained by the fact that 49.1 percent of households have a main pension as their primary source of income, even if that has been significantly reduced in recent years.