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Tuesday 20.03.2018 | Name days: Made, Irbe

Average wages in Latvia reached EUR 926 last year

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUIn 2017 the average gross wages and salaries for full-time work in Latvia comprised 926 euros. Compared to 2016, the average wages and salaries rose by 67 euros or 7.9 %, moreover in all economic activities.

The average net wages and salaries constituted 676 euros or 72.9 % of the gross wages and salaries and increase thereof observed during the year (of 7.0 %) was smaller than the rise before taxes, according to data from the Central Statistical Bureau of Latvia.

Considering the consumer price growth of 2.9 % in 2017, the real increase in wages and salaries comprised 4.0 %.

Last year, compared to 2016, the minimum non-taxable minimum applicable at work fell from 75 euros to 60 euros, whereas the national minimum wage rose by 2.7 % (from 370 euros to 380 euros).

In 2017, the average gross wages and salaries in private sector amounted to 915 euros and to 951 euros in public sector, while in general government sector, which includes central and local government institutions, as well as enterprises controlled and financed by the central and local government, to 904 euros. Wages and salaries in private sector grew faster (by 8.3 % annually), while rise in the public sector comprised 7.4 % and in general government sector 8.1 %.

Changes in the average wages and salaries are influenced not only by the increase in employee remuneration, but also structural changes of the labour market – enterprises that had started or stopped their business during the year, changes in the number of employees and workloads in various economic sectors, as well as state administrative measures in the fight against shadow economy. In general, the effects caused by the mentioned factors are reflected as changes in the wage and salary fund and number of full-time employees, which are used in the average wage calculations.

Compared to 2016, gross wage and salary fund increased by 8.2 % or 631.6 million euros, whereas the number of salaried workers, recalculated into full-time units, grew only by 0.4 % or 2.7 thousand in 2017. It should be noted that over the four recent years the average growth rate of the number of employees in the country was very low, and increase in the wage and salary fund was the one having the greatest influence on the changes in average earnings.

Compared to 2016, the average wages and salaries grew in all economic sectors. The sharpest rise in the average earnings (of 11.8 %) was observed in professional, scientific and technical activities (that include legal and accounting activities, advertising and market research, architectural and engineering activities, management consultancy activities, scientific research and development, etc.), with the greatest upturn in activities of head offices; management consultancy activities, advertising and market research as well as scientific research and development.

Earnings in education went up by 10.3 %, in wholesale and retail trade of 9.5 % (with the sharpest rise in wholesale), in mining and quarrying of 9.3 %, in agriculture, forestry and fishing by 8.8 % (with the sharpest rise in fishing), in accommodation and food service activities of 8.7 % (with the sharpest rise in food service activities), in information and communication of 8.3 %, and in manufacturing of 8.2 %.

Increase in the average wages and salaries in all mentioned highest-level sectors of the classification of economic activities, except for agriculture, forestry and fishing and information and communication, was influenced by the increase in wage and salary fund and reduction in the number of full-time employees. In agriculture, forestry and fishing and in information and communication, in turn, wage and salary fund rose faster than the number of employees.

In 2017, the highest wages and salaries for full-time work were registered in financial and insurance activities, information and communication, energy, public administration and defence, mining and quarrying, as well as professional, scientific and technical activities.  In other sectors, the average wages and salaries before taxes were below the national average.

The lowest wages and salaries, in turn, were observed in accommodation and food service activities, other service activities (that includes activities of public and other organisations, repair of computers and personal and household goods, washing and (dry-)cleaning, hairdressing and other beauty treatment, funeral and related activities), education, real estate activities, as well as arts, entertainment and recreation.

Compared to 2016, regional breakdown shows the sharpest rise in the average monthly gross wages and salaries in Vidzeme region – of 9.5 % in 2017. The increase recorded in other regions varies between 8.0 % and 8.4 %. The annual growth observed in Riga that had the highest earnings in 2017 (1044 euros) was the lowest among all regions – 7.6 %.  The lowest average gross wages and salaries still were observed in Latgale region – 640 euros for full-time work, followed by Vidzeme with 739 euros, Kurzeme with 775 euros, Zemgale with 786 euros, whereas indicator registered in Pierīga region amounted to 871 euros.

In Q4 2017, the average monthly gross wages and salaries in the country comprised 961 euros, and over the year they have grown by 7.5 %. Compared to other quarters, in Q4 2017 the share of irregular bonuses and premiums in the total earnings was the highest – 8.0 % (5.0–6.3 % in other quarters).

Compared to Q4 2016, in Q4 2017 the highest rise in the average wages and salaries was recorded in private sector – of 8.5 %, in public sector it constituted 6.1 % and in general government sector 7.0 %.

Compared to Q3 2017, gross wages and salaries in the country grew by 3.2 %. The sharpest increase was registered in public and general government sectors – of 4.8 % and 4.7 %, respectively, while in private sector it constituted 2.3 %.

In Q4 2017, net wages and salaries comprised 700 euros, and, compared to Q4 2016, they went up by 6.6 %.


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