Hungary’s Middle Classes Waning - KSH Study

  • 16 Apr 2015 4:00 AM
Hungary’s Middle Classes Waning - KSH Study
Hungary’s middle classes have thinned during the period of 2001 to 2011, according to a new Central Statistical Office (KSH) study. Ákos Huszár, one of the study’s editors, said data revealed that the share of highprestige professionals, top executives and middle management in the whole population had risen while so had the share of unskilled workers and those at the brim of society.

The share of people in the middle of the social hierarchy narrowed in the ten years covered by the study, he said. The study compared its findings to the 2001 census and confirmed that the structure of Hungarian society has “further polarised” in the ten years to 2011, Huszar added.

Márta Záhonyi, one of the authors of the study titled Stratification of Society, said the changes in proportions of occupational sectors reflect the economic changes in the social structure.

There are more people in jobs needing high qualifications and the number of people working in industry has dropped, mainly due to the economic crisis.

The number of entrepreneurs has declined, especially self-employed. The employment level in general rose in the ten years to 2011—mainly in the 50-74 age group—due to a rise in the pension age.

However, the employment rate of 15-24 year olds has dropped. The share of people with higher-education degrees rose even in unskilled jobs, Záhonyi said, adding that this means those with lower qualifications get further and further pushed out of the labour market.

Zsuzsanna Hunyadi, an analyst concerned with the economically inactive, including the jobless, said this group including children, students and pensioners, fell 6.5 million to 6 million in the period. At the same time, the number of unemployed rose by 150,000 from 2001 to 2011.

In the economically inactive group pensioners had the highest qualifications, but also among the jobless the number of university degree holders doubled in the period, she said.


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