In Brazil, three million people crossed the poverty threshold over the last six years in the six main metropolitan regions of Brazil, resulting in an 8.8% reduction in poverty percentages. The figures are included in the study Poverty and Riches in Metropolitan Brazil.
The research work was disclosed July 5 by the Brazilian Institute of Applied Economic Research (Ipea), considering figures for the capital cities of São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Recife, Salvador, Belo Horizonte and Porto Alegre.
The number of poor people, which was 14.3 million in 2002, rose to 15.4 million in 2003 and has been falling steadily since, reaching 11.3 million this year. In terms of percentages, the evolution was the following: 32.9% in 2002, 35% in 2003 and falling figures form then on, to the current 24.1%.
The main reasons, according to the Ipea, are economic growth, minimum wage raises and federal government income transfer programs.
The level of indigence followed the same rhythm. It was 12.7% in 2002 (5.5 million people), climbed to 13.7% in 2003 (6 million) and is now at 6.6% (3.1 million).
In 2003, the percentage of richest families, with monthly income of over 40 minimum wages, suffered a 20% reduction, returning to growth starting in 2005. According to the Ipea, last year the percentage was at the same level as in 2002 and, this year, the tendency is for it to remain stable.
The study shows, however, that "all these positive figures with regard to poverty have not evolved into productivity gains, due to the economic stability and to gains from higher minimum wages."
According to the Ipea, "the owners of means of production may be taking hold of a larger share of national income."