Nearly half of French feel poor or on verge of poverty


PARIS—Nearly one in two French people consider themselves poor or fear they soon will be, said a survey published Thursday ahead of a national poverty conference that comes amid a period of prolonged economic stagnation.

Eleven percent of respondents said they felt poor and 37 percent said they felt they were becoming poor, according to the poll by the CSA agency for business daily Les Echos.

Fifty-one percent of respondents said they did not consider themselves poor or in danger of poverty, and one percent gave no response.

Salaried employees, manual laborers and independent workers felt the most exposed to poverty, while executives and professionals felt the least exposed.

The French economy, the eurozone’s second biggest, has essentially marked time since the end of last year. It grew 0.2 percent in the third quarter of this year after a 0.1-percent contraction in the second.

The government has forecast growth of 0.8 percent for 2013, but the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development has predicted an increase as low as 0.3 percent and the International Monetary Fund just 0.4 percent.

Get Inquirer updates while on the go, add us on these apps:

Inquirer Viber

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • Fulpol

    they are honest… 

    with 7 percent GDP growth in the PHilippines, Pilipinos are now richer than the French.

    • Constantine

      Not that easy yet. We need to have at least 10 years of sizable economic growth to match the living standards in Europe and the US. We were battered from Erap regime up to Gloria Arroyo regime which is 12 years so we need to sustain the 7% annual growth for the next 9 years to achieve the economic status  comparable with Europe.

  • $14334231

    me to get rid of the euros and go back to francs…..

  • tanga_hanga_ni_abnoy

    we know how you feel

  • Constantine

    Europe is the PAST, United States is the PRESENT and Asia is the FUTURE. And the FUTURE is NOW!

  • Horst Manure

    Every 70- 80 yrs there is a depression the last one was 1930 and it finished in 1957
     Australia is about to become the next to tank.

    • Vertumnus

      Australia is next to tank?  Really? How did you come with that conclusion?  Australia has AAA credit ratings with a stable outlook, a GDP of 1.57 Trillion dollars, nominal growth of 2%, inflation at 1.6%, unemployment rate of 5%, external debt of 6% of GDP.  

      4 of the top 10 most livable cities in the world is in Australia.  Melbourne is number 1, Adelaide at number 5, Sidney at number 7, Pert at number 9.  A country as vast and rich with natural resources, Australia is coming along just fine.

      Don’t know what kind of data you read to come up with that conclusion.

  • Manolo Villareal

    Eventually, all humans will become poor.  Our earth is not growing along with its resources and population is growing fast.  When will it be, we will just hope it will be much much later.  When earth is full of people, the nearest alternate habitat is the moon.  Can humans live there? I’m sure I can’t get into that age but I dream of having that experience.

  • Constantine

    We need to have at least 10 years of sizable economic growth to match the living standards in Europe and the US. We were battered from Erap regime up to Gloria Arroyo regime which is 12 years so we need to sustain the 7% annual growth for the next 9 years to achieve the economic status  comparable with Europe.

    • Manolo Villareal

       We will be battered again in 2016 and 6 years thenceforth when Binay becomes president

  • PH2011

    EUROPE, the 1st world is in trouble.

    On the verge of collapsing are Greece ( the Birthplace of of Western Culture),Iceland,  Spain, Italy…now France. Not to mentioned  the non EU (ECC ) member countries.

    Time change.

  • efriend

    Let them eat cake.  Asia is booming.  The PHL should seize the opportunity.

  • Gallimaufries

    Amusing.  What exactly is “poor” to the French?  That they cannot now, like they used to, buy a new car to replace their 3-year olds, go to their favorite fancy restaurant on Saturday nights, shop weekly, etc.?  The article should have defined the term.  Anyway, there being a whale of difference in the way of life of Filipinos and that of Europeans, I cannot see us relating to this report and say:” welcome to our world.”  A man’s….. is another man’s…..  That’s for sure.

  • vir_a

    May be they have become poor in mind, habits and attitudes that they can no longer find ways to improve their lot except relying on government subsidy.

  • Drachir Metal

    Well French and other Europeans are among the most pampered citizens in the world. I agree, the article should have defined what “poor” means in their context. If poor means no  paid vacation for 2 months and other perks then , it is different from what asians perceived as poor. Poor for us, are those who can barely provide a meal 3 times a day , those who cannot afford education even elementary level or secondary, those who cannot  afford to go to hospitals, etc etc.

  • Vertumnus

    Oh come on!  The French are one of the most well off people in the world.  Universal Health care, 35 hours work week, 1,425.67 euro minimum wage per month, 5 weeks mandatory paid vacation not to mention all the national holidays.
    Some people just don”t get what being poor means!  They need to see the slums of the Philippines, Bangladesh, India, Brazil and so on.  Just a bunch of complainers!

  • LuwigVonMises

    so you are suppose feel if you are poor or not. so you measure poverty by feeling it. i don’t know if that make sense at all.

To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.

Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:

c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


editors' picks



latest videos