The report, published Thursday by Israel’s National Insurance Institute (NII), showed that 404,000 families lived below the poverty line during the second half of 2005 and the first half of 2006.
The poverty line is defined as 50% of the median net income and is adjusted to family size.
The report also showed that over 35 percent of children in Israel were living in poverty.
An NII source said the poverty rate was relatively stable. The increase in poverty amongst children and families has halted, and poverty among elderly citizens continues to fall, due to an increase in supplementary income payments.
Dr. Yigal Ben-Shalom, NII Director-General, said that although the poverty rate was still high in Israel, he believed the government could reduce it by implementing social initiatives.