Containment has worsened the financial situation of one in four households

An INSEE study shows that the economic consequences of confinement have been very unequal for households. The poorest and those with children were the most affected.

Households with children were particularly affected financially by the confinement.

At a time when France is preparing for an additional turn of the screw to stem the spread of the Covid, an INSEE study on the consequences of containment published on Wednesday gives water to the mill of those who would like to prevent going back over there. If the pause in the economy in the spring achieved its health objectives, it was indeed at a high social price: nearly one in four households said that their financial situation deteriorated during this period. Conversely, only 2% of them show an improvement, when it has remained stable for two-thirds.

The proportion of households that lost is all the higher when the standard of living was initially low, underlines the statistical institute: a third among the poorest 10%, half as much for the 10% of the richest households. . Overall, 7% of them cannot get by without getting into debt, compared to 2% for the general population.

Young people on the front line

This situation is mainly explained by the fall in activity – retirees have been preserved – with strong variations depending on the socio-professional category. Among the most affected, we find artisans and traders, excluding food, or the self-employed and workers, for lack of the latter being able to telework, unlike white collar workers.

The composition of households has also played against those with children, in favor of others: the financial situation of a third of the former has deteriorated, against 18% of the latter. “Even taking into account the age, the socio-professional category, the standard of living and the fact of having gone through partial unemployment or having teleworked, this over-representation of households with children among those whose financial situation is poor. is degraded remains “, analyzes INSEE. There are at least two reasons for this: the drop in working time – and therefore in income – following the closure of schools and the shutdown of canteens – which resulted in additional expenses.

Last lesson of the study, young people are among the first financial victims, being the most able to occupy precarious jobs, stopped dead with confinement. Thus, 9% of people in employment before confinement aged 15 to 24 have lost it, against less than 2% of those aged 40 to 65.