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The Household Finance and Consumption Survey (HFCS) 2020 was published on 19 May 2022. Since the first publication of 2020 estimates, the CCR has been retrospectively added to the 2018 data. As 2018 and 2020 estimates are now produced using the same methodology, comparisons can be made between them. This publication has been updated on 16 May 2023 and now includes references to 2018 estimates.

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Care should be taken when comparing income data in the HFCS with published income results from the SILC, (Survey on Income and Living Conditions), an annual household survey conducted by the CSO.

The SILC is the official source of income for households and individuals and also provides several key national poverty indicators, such as the at risk of poverty rate, the consistent poverty rate, and rates of enforced deprivation.

The definition of gross income differs between the HFCS and SILC. For example, employers’ social insurance contributions are included in the SILC definition of gross income and these contributions are not included in the HFCS gross income definition. The income reference periods for both surveys also differ. The income reference period for SILC year T is the calendar year T-1. This means that SILC 2020 income results were calculated from 2019 calendar income. The income reference period for the 2020 HFCS was the 12-month period immediately preceding the surveyed households’ dates of interview. As the data collection phase of the 2020 HFSC was from July 2020 to January 2021, the HFCS income reference period covers income from 2019, 2020 and 2021.

Mean and median annual gross household income values as measured in the HFCS were lower than the comparable SILC estimates (3.3% and 3.6% lower respectively). See Table 6.1.

Table 6.1 Comparison of HFCS and SILC income by year
 Mean Median
 20182020 20182020
HFCS gross household income (€)63,71271,347 47,66153,333
SILC gross household income (€)64,13373,698 46,67855,259
Difference between HFCS and SILC (%)0.73.3 2.13.6

Between 2018 and 2020, both mean and median gross household income in the HFCS grew by 12%. See Figure 6.1.

X-axis label20182020