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Turks spent the most on housing in 2023: TurkStat

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Households in Turkey spent the largest part of their budget, 23.9 percent, on housing in 2023, according to data from the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat).

TurkStat released its “Household Consumption Expenditures, 2023” on Tuesday.

According to the results of its 2023 Household Budget Survey, the amount households spent on housing was more than any other expenditure item. It was followed by transportation (21.9 percent), food and non-alcoholic beverages (20.6 percent), furniture and appliances (6.5 percent), restaurants and accommodation (5.9 percent) and clothing and footwear (5.4 percent).

The items with the lowest shares in total expenditures were insurance and financial services with 0.8 percent, education with 1 percent and recreation, sport and culture with 1.9 percent.

The monthly average consumption expenditure was estimated at TL 24,383 ($753) per household and TL 12,521 ($386) per adult equivalent, TurkStat said.

Consumption expenditure per adult equivalent is obtained by taking into account the household size and composition to make consumption expenses of households comparable.

The adult equivalence scale is defined as the proportionate increase in income per adult necessary to maintain a certain level of household living given some change in demographic circumstances.

TurkStat categorized the main sources of household income as “wages and salaries,” “entrepreneurial income,” “property income, interest and dividends,” “pensions” and “other transfers.”

Over the past several years the country has been suffering from a deteriorating economy, with high inflation, which stands at over 75 percent, and unemployment, as well as a poor human rights record. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is criticized for mishandling the economy, emptying the state’s coffers and establishing one-man rule in the country where dissent is suppressed and opponents are jailed on politically motivated charges.

A staggeringly high cost of living has become the new normal in Turkey, where recent increases in rent, food and utility prices are pushing up inflation, further crippling the purchasing power of citizens.

Turkey’s hunger threshold, defined as the amount of money that a family of four living in the capital city of Ankara needs to spend for healthy and balanced nourishment, increased to TL 19,926 ($618) in May, extending its lead over the minimum wage of TL 17,002 ($527), data from the United Public Workers Confederation showed last month.

Turkey is known for its relatively high percentage of the workforce making the minimum wage. Labor unions estimated that roughly half of workers earn a wage similar to the minimum wage.

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