Trends in elderly poverty in Hong Kong: A decomposition analysis

Siu Yau LEE, Kee Lee CHOU

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


Despite significant improvements in education and a decline in the percentage of immigrants in elderly population, the poverty risk in old age and the actual number of impoverished elders in Hong Kong have both increased significantly over the past two decades. This study assesses the changing rates of elderly poverty in Hong Kong over the last 20 years and, by means of decomposition analysis, identifies the factors shaping their evolution. The analysis is based on the 5 % microdata samples from the 1991, 2001, and 2011 censuses covering Hong Kong residents aged 65 and above. The results show that the rate of poverty among older adults increased from 27.7 % in 1991 to 38.7 % in 2001, and then to 41.4 % in 2011. The increase was largely caused by a significant decline in the number of earners in the households with older adults, which offset the poverty-reducing effects of education and the percentage decrease of immigrants. Copyright © 2015 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)551-564
JournalSocial Indicators Research
Issue number2
Early online dateSept 2015
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016


Lee, S.-Y., & Chou, K.-L. (2016). Trends in elderly poverty in Hong Kong: A decomposition analysis. Social Indicators Research, 129(2), 551-564.


  • Elderly poverty
  • Decomposition analysis
  • Hong Kong


Dive into the research topics of 'Trends in elderly poverty in Hong Kong: A decomposition analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.