Monday, February 5, 2018

Very low work intensity by tenure status

It is not hard to see why the issue of “jobless households” is something worth keeping an eye on from an Irish perspective.  Here are figures for the EU15 since 2003.

EU15 SILC Jobless Households 2003-2016

A while back we looked at the breakdown of this by household type.  Conclusion: Ireland has unusually high rates of jobless households for all household types. Here we will look at the differences by tenure status.

EU15 SILC VLWI by Tenure Status Table 2016

There may be a compositional force for the overall level of jobless households at play here.  We can see that in 2016 Ireland has the highest overall level of people living in jobless households (18.2 per cent).  For each tenure status Ireland ranked third worst (or joint second in the case of tenants paying less than market rates). Thus if Ireland has a similar population composition by tenure states we might expect to be ranked third worst in 2016 rather than worst in overall terms.

If we look at it in levels, for both types of owner occupiers we see that Ireland is only a couple of percentage points above the arithmetic mean of the EU15.  For tenants paying the market rate Ireland is seven percentage points above the mean for the EU15 and for tenants paying less than the market rate Ireland is 15 percentage points above the mean.  The relative size of these groups may matter.

We did look at the composition of the entire population by tenure status in an earlier post which gave a broad sweep though many of the housing and housing costs measures in the SILC.  Here is the table from that post but it is for the entire population not those aged under 60.

EU15 SILC Distribution of Population by Tenure Status 2016 Table

Ideally we would like this table for the population aged 60 and under but this does not appear to be available from Eurostat.  This population aged 60 and under will likely have a smaller proportion of owner-occupiers and, in particular, owner-occupiers which no mortgage or loan than the overall population. 

So we can’t be definitive but it seems likely that around half of the people living in jobless households in Ireland live in households who are tenants paying less than the market price (mainly local authority tenants).  It is impossible to tell the nature or direction of any causal relationship, or even if there is one, from the headline figures here.

Here is how the levels of jobless households in Ireland have varied by tenure status since 2003.

SILC VLWI by Tenure Status 2004 to 2016

And to conclude here are the levels for tenants paying less than market price across the EU15.

EU15 SILC VLWI Tenants Reduced Rates 2003-2016

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