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Over 1.3 million people struggle on their present income

14th August 2023 

Over 1.3 million people in Scotland are struggling on their present income, new analysis from Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) suggests.

The charity analysed research from YouGov which found 29 per cent of people were finding it difficult on their present income.

Considering Scotland’s adult population, that suggests more than 1.3 million people are struggling.

As of June 2023, the rate of inflation in the UK was 7.3 per cent, whereas food inflation was at 17.4 per cent.

The charity is encouraging anyone worried about money or bills to seek advice starting with online advice resources like  

CAS Financial Health spokesperson Myles Fitt said:

“Many of us are feeling the squeeze of the cost-of-living crisis, but it is still startling to see well over a million people are estimated to be finding it difficult on their present incomes.

“Bills and prices have raced ahead of wages and benefits in the past year and show no signs of slowing down significantly. It’s a worrying time for many people.

“There’s nothing to be embarrassed about when well over a million of us are worried about money, it is affecting so many of us. That is why we would encourage people to seek advice, starting with our online advice resources like  

“Our advisers get real results. We unlocked £132 million for people last year, and one in six people who sought advice saw a financial gain, the average value of which was over £4,200. Our advice is free, impartial and confidential. CABs don’t judge, they just help.”



The National Records of Scotland mid-year population estimate for Scotland’s adult population working age people and pensioners) is 4,568,378. Source: Table 4 here:    

29 per cent of 4,568,378 is 1,324,829.

All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 1509 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 13th February - 5th March 2023.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of adults in Scotland (aged 18+). 

QC1. Which of the phrases below would you say best describes how you feel about your household's income these days?


Unweighted base


Base: all




Net: Living comfortably




Net: Finding it difficult