Average earnings in Latvia exceed 900 euros
In Q2 2017 the average gross wages and salaries for full-time work constituted 927 euros. Compared to Q2 2016, the average wages and salaries increased by 74 euros or 8.7 %.
Compared to the previous quarter, in Q2 2016 the increase in the gross wages and salaries comprised 4.8 % (42.7 euros). Compared to Q2 2016, in Q2 2017 gross wages and salaries fund rose by 9.1 % or 173.2 million euros, whereas the number of salaried workers grew only by 0.3 % or 2.5 thousand (recalculated into full-time units), according to data from the Central Statistical Bureau of Latvia.
In Q2 2017, the average net wages and salaries constituted 676 euros, which was 7.8 % more than in Q2 2016. In general, the average net wages and salaries rose slower than the earnings before taxes.
As of 1 January 2017, the minimum untaxed minimum applied on the workplace was reduced from 75 euros to 60 euros, and minimum national wage rose from 370 euros to 380 euros or by 2.7 %.
The increase in consumer prices registered in Q2 2017 (of 3.1 %, compared to the corresponding period of the previous year) had downward effect on the purchasing power of the employed population – real wages and salaries grew only by 4.6 %. Compared to Q2 2016, in Q2 this year the rise of wages and salaries in private sector constituted 9.1 %, in public sector 8.2 % and in general government sector 9.3 %. In Q2 2017, the average gross wages and salaries amounted to 915 euros in the private sector and to 954 euros in public sector, whereas in general government sector, which includes central and local government institutions, as well as enterprises controlled and financed by the central and local government, the average gross wages and salaries amounted to 901 euros. Compared to the corresponding quarter of the previous year, in Q2 2017 the increase in wages and salaries was recorded in all sectors. The sharpest rise in average wages and salaries 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.) – of 13.5 % (with the sharpest increase in activities of head offices; management consultancy activities, as well as advertising and market research), education – of 13.0 %, electricity, gas, steam, and air conditioning supply – of 11.1 %, agriculture, forestry and fishing – of 11.0 %, as well as trade – of 10.4 % (with the most notable growth in wholesale and trade and repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles, as well as other wholesale). In all mentioned highest-level sectors of the classification of economic activities, except for electricity, gas, steam, and air conditioning supply, the rapid increase in the average wages and salaries was influenced by the rise in the wage and salary fund and decline in the number of full-time employees. Whereas increase in the average earnings in electricity, gas, steam, and air conditioning supply was significantly affected by irregular premiums and bonuses (basic salary and regular premiums grew by 6.2 % during the year).
In Q2 2017, the highest wages and salaries for full-time work were registered in financial and insurance activities, information and communication and energy sectors. Wages and salaries exceeding the national average indicator were also recorded in public administration, professional, scientific and technical activities, mining and quarrying, water supply; sewerage, waste management and remediation activities, as well as transportation and storage. 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), real estate activities, education, arts, entertainment and recreation.
Compared to Q2 2016, in Q2 2017 regional breakdown shows that the average monthly gross wages and salaries in all regions rose faster than the national average, except for Riga. Vidzeme and Zemgale indicate the sharpest annual rise – of 10.5 % and 10.1 %, respectively. In the 2nd quarter, the annual increase in Riga having the highest wages and salaries (1038 euros) constituted 7.9 %. Lower average gross wages and salaries still were observed in Latgale region – 643 euros for full-time work, followed by Vidzeme with 740 euros, Kurzeme with 774 euros, Zemgale with 784 euros, whereas indicator registered in Pierīga region amounted to 888 euros.