Annual growth in labour costs at 1.5% in euro area

Annual growth in labour costs at 1.5% in euro area

Annual growth in labour costs at 1.5% in euro area

The FINANCIAL -- Hourly labour costs rose by 1.5% in the euro area (EA19) and by 1.7% in the EU28 in the first quarter of 2017, compared with the same quarter of the previous year.

In the fourth quarter of 2016, hourly labour costs increased also by 1.5% and 1.7% respectively. These figures are published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

The two main components of labour costs are wages & salaries and non-wage costs. In the euro area, wages & salaries per hour worked grew by 1.4% and the non-wage component by 1.6%, in the first quarter of 2017 compared with the same quarter of the previous year. In the fourth quarter of 2016, the annual changes were +1.6% and +1.4% respectively. In the EU28, hourly wages & salaries rose by 1.6% and the non-wage component by 1.8% in the first quarter of 2017. In the fourth quarter of 2016, annual changes were +1.8% and +1.5% respectively.

Breakdown by economic activity

In the first quarter of 2017 compared with the same quarter of the previous year, hourly labour costs in the euro area rose by 1.3% in industry, by 1.9% in construction, by 1.3% in services and by 1.8% in the (mainly) non- business economy. In the EU28, labour costs per hour grew by 1.5% in industry, by 1.8% in construction, by 1.6% in services and by 1.8% in the (mainly) non-business economy.

Member States

In the first quarter of 2017, the highest annual increases in hourly labour costs for the whole economy were registered in Romania (+17.2%), Hungary (+11.7%), Bulgaria (+10.1%), Lithuania (+9.9%) and Latvia (+9.1%). Decreases were recorded in Finland (-2.7%), Luxembourg and Netherlands (both -0.1%).