The national Social Weather Survey of September 28-October 1, 2023, found 48% of Filipino families rating themselves as Mahirap or Poor, 27% rating themselves as Borderline (by placing themselves on a horizontal line dividing Poor and Not Poor), and 25% rated themselves as Hindi Mahirap or Not Poor.
Compared to June 2023, the percentage of Poor families rose by 3 points from 45%, while Borderline families fell by 6 points from 33%, and Not Poor families rose by 3 points from 22%.
The estimated numbers of Self-Rated Poor families were 13.2 million in September 2023 and 12.5 million in June 2023. To arrive at the estimated numbers of Self-Rated Poor families, the percentage of respondent households rating themselves as poor was applied to the Philippine Statistics Authority medium-population projections for 2023.
SWS has measured Self-Rated Poverty (SRP) quarterly through face-to-face (F2F) surveys since 1992, except in the first three quarters of 2020 when F2F was not possible due to the lack of public transportation during the pandemic. SWS resumed the SRP surveys in the fourth quarter of 2020, up to the present.
SWS: 48% of Filipino families feel poor
The 3-point rise in the nationwide Self-Rated Poor figure between June 2023 and September 2023 was due to increases in all areas, especially in Mindanao, combined with a decline in Balance Luzon (or Luzon outside Metro Manila).
Compared to June 2023, Self-Rated Poor rose sharply in Mindanao from 54% to 71%. It rose slightly in Metro Manila, from 35% to 38% and in the Visayas, from 57% to 59%. However, it fell in Balance Luzon from 39% to 35%.
On the other hand, Borderline rose in Metro Manila from 23% to 29% and in the Visayas from 28% to 32%. However, it fell in Balance Luzon from 38% to 25% and in Mindanao from 33% to 25%.
At the same time, Not Poor rose in Balance Luzon from 23% to 40%, while it fell in Metro Manila from 42% to 33%, in Mindanao from 13% to 4%, and in the Visayas from 15% to 8%.
On Self-Rated Food Poverty, based on the type of food eaten by their families, the September 2023 survey found 34% of families rating themselves as Food-Poor, 35% rating themselves as Food Borderline (by placing themselves on the horizontal line dividing Food-Poor and Not Food-Poor), and 31% rating themselves Not Food-Poor.
This compares with June 2023, when 34% of families were Food-Poor, 38% were Food Borderline, and 26% were Not Food-Poor.
The estimated number of Self-Rated Food Poor families was 9.2 million in September 2023 and June 2023.