NEWS » 40% decrease in family's wealth in past 10 years

40% decrease in family's wealth in past 10 years


The wealth of Italian families has decreased by more than 40 percent in the last 10 years. This is what has emerged from the last report released by Censis.

According to the 46° “Rapporto del Censis sulla situazione del Paese”, if the financial net worth per family was 26,000 Euros a decade ago, it is now estimated to be 15,600 Euros, 40.5 percent less.

The report documented a decade of crisis, since 2001, that has only worsened, according to many Italian newspapers, because of a lack of government action in the last few years.

52,3% of Italians declared to feel angry about this lack of political action and are disheartened while only 20,1% showed a positive attitude and the desire to react to the situation.

The study showed that four out of 10 families had given up a holiday and cut down on clothes shopping, while 65.8 percent drove their cars and motor-bikes less to save on fuel.

Shops that buy gold for cash have dramatically increased as struggling Italians sell their valuables to pay the bills. One in 10 families, in fact, sold gold and jewels in the last two years to raise cash.

Wealth is spread in an increasingly uneven way. The number of families with a net wealth of over 500,000 Euros almost doubled, while the share of total wealth held by middle class families dropped 18 percentage points to 48.3 percent.

The most wealthy individuals are older members of society while young families are poorer than before.

Italian youth unemployment is more than three times the national rate, hitting a record of 36.5 percent last month.

The economical changes seem also to effect other cultural aspects of society. For example, the attitude towards faith has also changed as less than one Italian out of three declares to be a catholic.

The uncertainty about the future has also changed the education sector. Education is not seen anymore as an investment for the future because it won’t necessarily provide a job and social mobility.

in the last two years more young people have chosen technical and professional schools and from 2006 to 2011 the number of registrations at the university has decreased by 6.5%.

The new trend for people who can spend more is to send their children to study abroad and invest in languages.

However, there are also some positive sings. While clearly the traditional production is not doing well (in manufacturing there is 4.7% of firms less between 2009 and today), new areas are expanding, such as those related to Internet applications or cooperation. Cooperative enterprises rose by 14% between 2001 and 2011, employment has seen 8% more employees between 2007 and 2011 (+2.8% in the first nine months of 2012), compared of -1.2% of employment in Italy.

Giulia Lombardo

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