One in every 12 people in Spain (8.1%) suffered severe material deprivation in 2022, more than double the figure before the financial crisis (2007: 3.5%) and even one point above the figure for 2014 (7.1%), the highest figure recorded until that time since the National Statistics Institute (INE) began conducting the Living Conditions Survey in 2004. Therefore, according to INE data analysed in Focus on Spanish Society, a publication edited by Funcas, all the gains in this indicator between 2014 and 2019, a five-year period in which severe material deprivation fell from 7.1% to 4.7%, were “lost” in 2020 (7%). Despite GDP and employment growth, severe material deprivation has continued to increase between 2020 and 2022, rising above pre-pandemic levels.
The severe material deprivation rate determines the percentage of the population lacking at least four items from a list of nine goods and activities to which access is now considered essential for individual well-being. It is an indicator of severe vulnerability, the analysis of which becomes particularly important in a context of successive crises and a sharp rise in inflation.