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Summary: Age and Income and Poverty


Summary: Age and Income and Poverty

  • In 2015-16, before housing costs are accounted for, 19% of children, 16% of working age adults and 16% of pensioners in Scotland were living in relative poverty.

  • After housing costs, 26% of children, 20% of working age adults and 13% of pensioners in Scotland were living in relative poverty.

   AHC Eq   

Source: http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2017/03/2213


  • Around 13% of children in Scotland lived in workless households in 2016. 

Source: Annual Population Survey


Source: Annual Population Survey


  • More than half (52%) of employees aged 18-24 earned less than the living wage (£8.25 per hour) in 2016. This compares to much lower proportions (less than 20%) amongst the other, older age groups.


Source: Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE)


  • There were marked age differences in how well people manage financially in 2016: adults aged 16-24 were the least likely to be managing well financially and least likely to have savings.  Conversely, with increasing age, people were generally more likely to be coping financially and more likely to have savings.


    Source: Scottish Household Survey


Useful Links

Age page

Income and Poverty

national Performance Framework

National Performance Framework

Fifty National Indicators enable progress towards the achievement of the National Outcomes and ultimately the delivery of the Purpose to be tracked.

Indicators are chosen to show how the Scottish Government are progressing on the range of Outcomes. Equality breakdowns illustrate how protected groups are progressing towards achievement of the National Outcomes, particularly ‘we have tackled the significant inequalities in Scottish society’.

Where available, equality breakdowns of progress against this National Indicator can be found under the 'What more do we know about the National indicator?' heading. The national indicator with the most relevance to the income and poverty topic is:

Reduce the proportion of individuals living in poverty

Publications and Outputs

Publications and Outputs

Scottish Government Equality Outcomes: Age Evidence Review (2013) - A comprehensive review of available evidence in relation to age equality.

The Social Fund: A Review of Selected Literature (2011)

Differences in decline - Relative child poverty in Scotland and England 1998-99 to 2008-09 - Research Findings (2011) - This report summarises the results of an investigation into the differing trends in child poverty across the UK between 1998-99 and 2008-09, focusing on the difference between Scotland and England. It explores the extent to which this difference can be attributed to government policy.

Tackling child poverty in Scotland: Analysis of focus group consultation findings (2011)

Tackling Poverty Board: A Summary of Evidence (2011)

Evaluation of the Working for Families Fund (2004-2008) (2009)

The Experience of Rural Poverty in Scotland (2009)

Financial Inclusion: A topic report from the Scottish Household Survey (2007)

External Publication

This research has been carried out independently of the Scottish Government, the results are hosted on an external website and the findings do not necessarily represent the views of the Scottish Government or Scottish Ministers

This paper, produced by Save the Children, gives a statistical snapshot of child poverty in different cities across Scotland, with a specific focus on Income and Education.  

Save the Children - Child Poverty in Scotland: a local snapshot

Welsh Government 'An analysis on the impact of the UK Government's welfare reforms in Wales' (2013) - this paper focuses on those with protected equality characteristics.



Scottish Household Survey and Family Resources Survey microdata is available (through a ‘special licence’ scheme) from the UK Data Archive.

External Links

External Links

Please note that you will leave the Scottish Government web site by clicking on any of the following links, and that the Scottish Government and its staff are not responsible for content external to this web site.

Poverty and Social Exclusion Survey

Joseph Rowntree Foundation

Poverty Alliance

The Poverty Site

The Poverty Site, links to further analyses

Poverty and Social Exclusion survey - an Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funded UK survey of the dimensions of relative poverty. The Scottish Government has funded a rural boost of the Scottish sample to enable better analysis of this rich data source. Analysis of the Scottish results by the Heriot-Watt and Glasgow University partners in the project were published in 2013.


Contact Details

If you have any enquiries relating to Equality and Poverty Statistics then please contact us at:




0131 244 3004


Equality and Poverty Analysis Team

Communities Analytical Services

Scottish Government

1F North

Victoria Quay

Edinburgh EH6 6QQ


We welcome any comments on both the format and content of the website, including any problems you may encounter.