Increase in collectively negotiated wages slows down in early 2007

11/04/2007 15:00

In the first quarter of 2007 wages agreed in collective negotiations rose by 1.4 percent relative to one year previously. The increase is less substantial than the 2.0 percent increase of 2006.

Collectively agreed wages by quarter

Collectively agreed wages by quarter

Special allowances stable

With 0.1 percent, special allowances barely contributed to the increase in collectively agreed wages in the first quarter of 2007. Last year, special allowances still increased considerably by 0.4 percent. The increase was due to employer-paid contributions to life course savings schemes and health care costs. These contributions have hardly changed in the first quarter of 2007.

Marginal differences between the various sectors

Provisional results are based on 87 percent of collectively negotiated wages. In most sectors, the collectively negotiated wage increase varies little from the average increase rate (1.4 percent).

With 1.8 percent, the sector trade recorded the highest wage increase in the first quarter, followed by public utilities. In 2006, trade was still among the sectors with the lowest wage increase rate. The most modest wage increase (0.8 percent) was recorded in public administration. Last year, the wage increase in this sector was considerable, because special allowances rose markedly.

Collectively agreed wage increase by sector, first quarter 2007

Collectively agreed wage increase by sector, first quarter 2007

Contractual wage costs tally with collectively negotiated wages

In the first quarter of 2007, contractual wage costs increase rose to 1.5 percent and almost equalled the increase in collectively agreed wages.

In 2006, the increase in wage costs was only half the increase in collectively agreed wage costs. This was mainly caused by lower employer-paid contributions for disability insurance and pre-pension schemes. In the first quarter of 2007, the total amount of employer-paid contributions remained virtually the same.

Collectively agreed wages and contractual wage costs

Collectively agreed wages and contractual wage costs

Monique Hartog