In the United States, these measures are called “hardship” indicators, and in Europe they are called “deprivation” measures — the distinction may seem merely semantic, but I think it reflects a broader difference in outlooks. American policymakers, on the whole, are more concerned with whether people meet an absolute threshold of wellbeing (the elusive poverty line), and Europeans tend to think about poverty as something that could vary in different social contexts. For example, Europeans ask many questions that seem to be get at something like relative deprivation, “could you afford to take a vacation this year?” “can you afford to have people over to your house for a meal?” The main social survey in the U.S. that measures deprivation, the SIPP, contains no measures that look at leisure or social opportunities (beyond the basic quality of the neighborhood).
There are also some quirky cultural differences. Consider how different surveys ask about food security:
“could afford to eat meat or fish every second day if wished” (Europe)
“went without meals because of shortage of money” (Australia)
“household sometimes/often did not have enough to eat because of lack of money” (U.S.)
“could afford to eat a fruit each day if wished” (Japan)
I have no idea why these questions are different. Maybe fruit in Japan is just really expensive?