Hourly labour cost up by 3.8% in second quarter 2014 [data]

Annual growth in labour costs up to 1.2% in both euro area and EU28

matthew_vella
Matthew Vella
16 September 2014, 11:29am
Hourly labour costs rose by 1.2% in both the euro area (EA18) and the EU282 in the second quarter of 2014, compared with the same quarter of the previous year.

Malta saw an increase of 3.8% in hourly labour costs for the whole economy.

In the first quarter of 2014, hourly labour costs increased by 0.6% and 1.0% respectively. These figures were published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

The two main components of labour costs are wages and salaries, and non-wage costs. In the euro area, wages and salaries per hour worked grew by 1.2% and the non-wage component by 1.0%, in the second quarter of 2014 compared with the same quarter of the previous year.

In the first quarter of 2014 the annual changes were +1.0% and -0.6% respectively. In the EU28, hourly wages & salaries rose by 1.2% and the non-wage component by 1.1% for the second quarter of 2014, compared with +1.4% and -0.2% respectively for the first quarter of 2014.

In the second quarter of 2014 compared with the same quarter of the previous year, hourly labour costs in the euro area rose by 2.5% in industry, by 0.7% in construction, by 0.9% in services and by 0.6% in the (mainly) non-business economy. In the EU28, labour costs per hour grew by 2.8% in industry, by 0.4% in construction, by 0.9% in services and by 0.7% in the (mainly) non-business economy.

The Labour Cost Index is a short-term indicator showing the development of hourly labour costs incurred by employers. It is calculated dividing the labour cost in national currency by the number of hours worked. Therefore, the development of both variables, labour costs and hours worked, affects the evolution of the index.

r which data are available for the second quarter of 2014, the highest annual increases in hourly labour costs for the whole economy were registered in Estonia (+7.3%), Slovakia (+6.0%), Latvia (+5.9%), Lithuania (+5.1%) and Romania (+5.0%). Decreases were recorded in Cyprus (-3.9%) and Ireland (-0.4%).

matthew_vella
Matthew Vella is executive editor at MaltaToday.