We use necessary cookies that allow our site to work. We also set optional cookies that help us improve our website.
For more information about the types of cookies we use, and to manage your preferences, visit our Cookies policy here.

Poverty over time

Proportion of people in poverty over time after housing costs (1996/97 - 2021/22)

A quarter (25%) of Londoners live in households that are in poverty (after housing costs - AHC). This means that 2.2 million Londoners lived in poverty in 2021/22. The poverty rate (AHC) in London is 3 percentage points higher than in the rest of England. This is the lowest the poverty rate (AHC) for London since the current measure began in 1996/97.

The proportion of households in poverty after housing costs (AHC) was relatively stable between 1996/97 and 2019/20:

  • In London, poverty rates varied between 27% and 30%; and
  • in the rest of England, poverty rates varied between 20% and 24%.

Poverty rates (AHC) in London have been higher than in the rest of England for at least the last two decades.

In contrast, poverty rates before housing costs (BHC) over the last 20 years have been more similar between London and the rest of England - never more than a 2 percentage point gap between them from 1996/97 to 2019/20. However, the current rates of BHC poverty are noticeably higher in the rest of England (18%) than in London (14%). This shows the large impact of the cost of housing as a driver of poverty in the capital.

Read our explainer for how poverty is measured here.

Read our analysis of the latest poverty statistics for London here.

NOTE: These results show three-year averages to the stated date. Please note that data for 2020/21 have been excluded from analysis due to concerns with bias in the sample. Poverty is defined as 60% of median household income for that year after housing costs.

Proportion of people in poverty over time before housing costs (1996/97 - 2021/22)