June 23, 2024

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Total labor costs and wages rise above the inflation rate in the first quarter of 2024

Total labor costs and wages rise above the inflation rate in the first quarter of 2024

Cyber ​​security officer. (May 3, 2024. Reuters/Stephanie Leacock)

The costs derived from employing workers continue to rise and have now accumulated four consecutive quarters of rise at a rate greater than the rate of inflation, allowing… Purchasing power gains For employees and a Greater distribution of productivity. According to data published by the National Institute of Statistics on Monday, total labor costs (cost per hour worked) rose by 4.5% year-on-year during the first three months of 2024 in seasonally adjusted and calendar-corrected terms, while inflation fell at a level of about 3% annually in the same year. Period.

The Harmonized Labor Cost Index statistic, which is comparable to those in the entire European Union, reflects progress in all elements of labor costs. Pure payroll costs rose by 4.2%, although “other costs” increased by 5.6%, following the trend of previous months. The first includes bonuses for both base salary, supplements and overtime payments, while the second refers to non-salary perceptions and, above all, Employer contributions to social security.

These growths respond to general increases in salaries, especially the minimum wage, and social security contributions. At the beginning of 2024, the government legislated a A new increase in the minimum wage among professionals (SMI) at 5%, amounting to €1,134 in total per month. Moreover, according to data published monthly by the Department of Labor, salaries negotiated in agreements are growing at a rate of 2.9% through April. Meanwhile, employer contributions to Social Security are growing by a tenth a year thanks to the intergenerational equality mechanism (MEI) approved in the recent pension reform.

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The annual variance in hourly cost in uncorrected terms was 7.5%, in salary cost 7.3%, and in other costs 8%. It should be noted that ICLA does not allow absolute knowledge of salaries. Only its development Temporary, so among these conditions is the information available by sector.

Another factor driving salaries is job growth in sectors with greater value-added, especially in value-added sectors Information and communication And in Professional activitiesScientific and technical have higher salaries associated with them. If seasonal and calendar influences are eliminated, the salary cost per effective working hour increases by 8.2% per year in information and communications and by 7.8% in scientific and technical professional activities.

It is also worth noting the progress that has been made.,III download By 5.9%. This is the sector with the lowest average salary (1,390 euros in total in 2022, according to the National Institute of Statistics), which is why SMI has a particular influence, as well as increased tensions to find workers, according to companies. In contrast, the cost of salaries decreases by 11.8% in electricity supply and grows slightly in real estate activities (0.5%) and education (1.3%).

According to the latest data available from Eurostat, for the fourth quarter of 2024, Spain records for the first time He increases of total labor and payroll costs Higher than the EU averageAnd 5.3% and 4.3%, respectively, compared to an average of 4.2% in both indicators. Other costs grew the most in Spain, reaching 8.2%, while progress in the European Union reached 4.5%. In recent years, labor costs in Spain have been lower than those of the 27 countries, which has allowed gains in the competitiveness of national companies and attracted foreign investment in services.

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