This paper investigates trends in financial poverty in OECD countries by asking the following questions: 1) Have overall levels of poverty increased, decreased or remained stable? 2) Has the incidence of poverty shifted from certain demographic groups to others? 3) How has the social income transfer system coped in its task of protecting people from poverty? The main conclusions are as follows. Sharply rising trends in poverty were found in only two countries, while modest increases in poverty were measured in several countries. In a number of other countries, relative poverty has remained stable, or has even declined. Sharp falls in 'absolute' poverty are found in several countries. There is evidence of a shift of poverty from the elderly to families with children. The study found no evidence that the impact of social security transfers on the extent of poverty has diminished.