More people are living on low incomes than during the recession in 2008 despite an increase in employment, according to a new study.
Families faced an increased risk of falling below minimum-income standards even with more work and slightly better pay, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) said.
Six in 10 households with at least one person in work still struggle to make ends meet, the researchers found.
The report says cuts in benefits have outweighed improved job prospects to contribute to an increase in the risk of having too little income to meet the minimum income standard (MIS) - based on what the public say is needed for an acceptable standard of living.
The report identifies 11.6 million people living below MIS in 2013-14, 28 per cent of individuals covered by the research.
This was up from 21 per cent in 2008-09, an increase of about a third over the period.
Katie Schmuecker, policy and research manager at JRF, said:
Work is the best route to economic security and a better standard of living, and we welcome record levels of employment...
Despite working full-time hours, more families are still falling short of what they need to make ends meet. We need the state and businesses to ensure people in work can achieve economy security.