Significant rise in labor costs in Q2

Data published by the Central Statistical Bureau (CSB) September 13 show that, compared to the 2nd quarter of 2018, in the 2nd quarter of 2019 hourly labor costs rose by 8.9 % or 79 cents, reaching EUR 9.60. Seasonally adjusted data show increase of 7.0 %.

Compared to the 2nd quarter of 2018, in the 2nd quarter of 2019 hourly labor costs increased in all economic activities. The sharpest upturn was recorded in health and social work activities (of 18.0 %), and information and communication.

Hourly labor costs are influenced not only by changes in wages, salaries and other labor costs, but also by the fluctuations in the number of hours worked and employees over the year, the CSB said.

"In the sectors indicating sharper hourly labor cost rise, greater influence was exerted by the increase in regular earnings and irregular premiums and bonuses, employers’ voluntary social security contributions (additional pension insurance contributions, health and life insurance contributions, etc.), as well as decline in the number of hours worked. It should be noted that, compared to the corresponding period of 2018, in the 2nd quarter of 2019 reduction in the number of hours worked was influenced by the smaller number of working days."

Highest labor costs were still recorded in financial and insurance activities, while lowest were in accommodation and food service activities.

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