In Brazil, 43% of Blacks and 20% of Whites Live Below Poverty Line

The majority of Brazil’s poor population is formed by blacks. This is what researchers from the Institute of Applied Economic Research (IPEA) and the United Nations Development Fund for Women (Unifem) discovered.

Their findings appear in a study released Thursday, November 17, on inequality between whites and blacks and between men and women.

The statistics, from 2003, reveal that 20% of the white population was living below the poverty line, while 43% of the black population belonged to this category.

The poverty indices demonstrate further differences between whites and blacks. Using data on personal income, rather than the traditional "per capita income" index, which is computed by splitting total family income among all family members, the study shows that 7% of whites receive less than a quarter of the minimum wage per month, while 19% of blacks fall into this category, on an individual basis.

Inequities in income distribution are also greater among blacks. 64.6% of the poorest 10% of the population is black. At the other extreme, only 22.3% of the wealthiest 10% of the population is black. When the upper income segment is narrowed to the wealthiest 1% of the population, blacks comprise only 11.5%.

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