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Hourly labour costs ranged from €4.4 to €42 in EU

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Staff Writer |
Hourly labour costs
Cost of work   Huge differences in Europe

In 2016, average hourly labour costs in the whole economy excluding agriculture and public administration were estimated to be €25.4 in the European Union (EU) and €29.8 in the euro area.

However, this average masks significant gaps between EU Member States, with the lowest hourly labour costs recorded in Bulgaria (€4.4), Romania (€5.5), Lithuania (€7.3), Latvia (€7.5), Hungary (€8.3) and Poland (€8.6), and the highest in Denmark (€42.0), Belgium (€39.2), Sweden (€38.0), Luxembourg (€36.6) and France (€35.6).

In industry, labour costs per hour were €26.6 in the EU and €32.6 in the euro area, in services €25.8 and €28.7 respectively and in construction €23.3 and €26.1.

In the mainly non-business economy excluding public administration, labour costs per hour were €26.6 in the EU and €29.7 in the euro area in 2016.

Labour costs are made up of wages & salaries and non-wage costs such as employers' social contributions. The share of non-wage costs in the whole economy was 23.9% in the EU and 26.0% in the euro area, ranging from 6.6% in Malta to 33.2% in France.

These estimates for 2016 come from an article issued by Eurostat.


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