Less than 1000 euros net: Every fourth pensioner lives below the poverty line

Less than 1000 euros net
One in four pensioners lives below the poverty line

The consequences of inflation hit German pensioners particularly hard. According to the Federal Statistical Office, more than 25 percent of pensioners will receive less than 1,000 euros net per month in 2021. In order to make ends meet, many return to work in old age.

In Germany in 2021, around 4.9 million pensioners had less than 1000 euros a month net income at their disposal. This corresponds to 27.8 percent of pension recipients, as reported by the Federal Statistical Office based on the results of the microcensus. This proportion is higher for women at 38.2 percent than for men at 14.7 percent. A total of around 17.6 million people in Germany received a pension for reasons of age in 2021, compared to 16.6 million ten years earlier. The proportion of these people in the population in private households also increased – from 20.9 percent in 2011 to 21.4 percent in 2021.

Social politicians are increasingly warning that the energy crisis with high inflation is leading to more poverty in old age. In its third relief package, the federal government wants to support pensioners with a one-off energy price lump sum. The focus is primarily on those with lower incomes.

employment increases

For more and more people over 65, gainful employment is an important source of income – not only because the retirement age has been gradually increasing from 65 to 67 from 2012 to 2031. Older people are already working much more often than ten years ago, as the statisticians emphasized. In 2021, 12.9 percent of those aged 65 to under 75 were working. Ten years earlier it was 7.0 percent. Among those with a university degree, the proportion was particularly high at 20.2 percent. At 10.4 percent, it was only around half of those without a professional qualification.

According to the information, men and women differ in their employment, even at an advanced age: while 16.2 percent of men aged 65 to under 75 were employed in 2021, the figure was only 9.9 percent for women.

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