Māori are more likely to return to a benefit within a year of leaving, according to a Ministry of Social Development survey.
The ministry surveyed just over 100,000 people who stopped receiving a main benefit in the year to 30 June 2019.
It found 54% of Māori return to a main benefit, such as jobseeker, sole parent or supported living, compared to 45% for all beneficiaries.
Overall, Māori women and Māori youth have the lowest likelihood of coming off a benefit and entering the workforce.
Policy analysts believe this points towards a strong pattern of continuous reliance on welfare for these groups and tailored solutions are needed.