AROUND 250,000 households are living on less than €15,000 per year according to new research.
The survey from the Nevin Economic Research Centre (NERI) also shows that average household income is €53,000 but 60 per cent of households have an income below that average.
This discrepancy shows how wide variations in wealth can skew the average and bring it above the income level of most people.
A third of households are living on a combined income of less than €27,000 while about 2 per cent of households have a gross income of more than €200,000 per year.
The figures relate to the combined income of 4,333 households surveyed in 2011 and included people who are working, unemployed and retired.
The research also measures disposable income levels and found that 34 per cent of households have a disposable income of less than €500 per week.
NERI points out a number of drawbacks to the survey indicating that high income households are less likely to respond. Similar successful sampling can be difficult among low-income households and minorities.
Despite this, they argue that the survey uses microdata from the CSO’s Survey on Income and Living Conditions (SILC) which is the provides a detailed and comprehensive insight into the patterns of income in Ireland