The numbers refer to the second quarter of 2022 and represent an increase compared to the previous quarter. Under analysis were nine countries: Bulgaria, Slovakia, Italy, France, Slovenia, Belgium, Austria, Ireland, and Finland. Portugal is not included in this analysis.

According to a report by ECO, the percentage of the European population with “difficulties”, or “great difficulties”, in paying bills increased in the second quarter of 2022 in all countries under analysis, with the exception of Slovenia and Finland, where this indicator dropped by 0.1 and 0.5 percentage points, respectively.

In turn, the biggest advances were seen in France and Austria, with an increase of 5.6 and 2.7 percentage points, respectively.

The percentage of the population in “difficulty”, or “great difficulties”, in paying the bills ranged from 11% in Finland to 39.8% in Bulgaria. The percentage of the population in the opposite situation, registering “easy” or “great ease” in paying the bills, was between 3.6% in Bulgaria and 40.5% in Finland.

The European population in a situation of “easy” or “great ease” in paying bills fell compared to the first quarter of the year in the nine countries analyzed. The only exception to this trend was Italy, where the variation increased by 0.3 percentage points.

Slovenia (-4.4 percentage points) and Austria (-4 percentage points) were the countries where there was the biggest drop in the population with ease, or great ease, in paying bills.