For the 53 countries with information in 2015 and 2020, on average, the share of people living below half the median has declined by 1 percentage point, from 13.4% to 12.5%. This trend continued during COVID-19, in large part because of generous social assistance programs implemented in several countries. Yet the share living below half the median remains worryingly high in many countries: In 17 countries, more than 20% of the population lives below half the
national median.

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