Some 60% of Israelis Fear They Won’t Be Able to Support Their Children

Arabs are the most worried, while ultra-Orthodox Jews are less concerned within the Jewish community.

Nir Kafri

Around 59% of Israelis 20 and older believe they won’t be able to support their children in the future, according to a survey conducted by the Central Bureau of Statistics last year. This works out to around 3 million people.

Some 76% of Arabs, 56% of Jews and 47% of ultra-Orthodox Jews said they would not be able to support their children.

In the survey, 65% of respondents said they feared they would not be able to save money for the future. Around 79% of Arabs said they were worried, compared with 62% of Jews and 51% of ultra-Orthodox Jews.

In households with per capita income up to 2,000 shekels ($549) a month, 77% of respondents said they feared they wouldn’t be able to save. The figure was 56% for households with per capita income up to 4,000 shekels a month.

Around 55% of Israelis – 2.8 million people – are concerned they won’t be able to live in dignity in old age. The figure is 66% for Arabs, 53% for Jews and 37% for ultra-Orthodox Jews.

A full 52% fear they will be financially dependent on others. That figure is 56% for women and 48% for men.

Divorcees are more concerned about their financial future than married people, the statistics bureau found. Younger Israelis tend to be more worried.

Some 39% of respondents said they expected their financial situation to improve over the next few years, while 35% predicted that it would remain unchanged and 17% said it would worsen. The percentage of those who believed that their financial status would worsen increased with age, especially near retirement.

In 2002 and 2004, surveys found low optimism regarding Israelis’ financial future. Outlooks improved between 2004 and 2010, but since then people have become more pessimistic.

In 2013, some 13% of respondents 20 and up were very concerned that they would lose their job. Around 40% said that if they lost their job they were unlikely to find another one at the same salary.

Arab respondents were more concerned about job security than Jews — 21% versus 12%. Men were more concerned than women, and people with low salaries were more concerned than high earners.