Average gross monthly remuneration rises to 1,227 euros in the 1st quarter

The average monthly gross wage per worker increased 3.1% in the first quarter of 2021, compared to the same period in 2020, from 1,190 euros to 1,227 euros, the National Statistics Institute (INE) announced this Thursday.

According to the INE, this variation in the average monthly gross remuneration (job position) is 0.8 percentage points lower than that observed in December 2020.

The regular component of that remuneration increased by 3.6% and the base remuneration increased by 3.8%, reaching 1,106 and 1,041 euros, respectively.

In real terms, discounting the inflation measured by the variation of the Consumer Price Index (CPI, which was 0.4% in March), the increases in average earnings per worker were 2.7%, 3.2% and 3.4 %, respectively.

These results, INE specifies, concern about 4.1 million jobs, corresponding to Social Security beneficiaries and subscribers to the Caixa Geral de Aposentações.

As for the average regular gross monthly remuneration per worker – which excludes components such as holiday and Christmas allowances and, therefore, has a less seasonal behavior -, it registered an increase of 3.6%, from 1,067 euros in March 2020 to 1,106 euros in the same month of 2021.

According to INE, “this component registered a growth higher than that observed in December 2020 (plus 0.1 percentage points).

Regarding the average gross monthly base salary per worker (which only includes the basic salary), it increased by 3.8%, going from 1,003 euros in March 2020 to 1,041 euros in March 2021. This variation was 0.3 percentage points higher to December 2020.

Comparing the covid-19 pandemic year (from March 2020 to February 2021) with the one that preceded it (from March 2019 to February 2020), it appears that the average monthly base salary per worker increased by 3.2% in the total economy (2.7% in the previous year), 2.3% among companies that resorted to ‘lay-off’ (2.5% in the previous year) and 4.0% among companies that never resorted to ‘lay-off’ (3.8% in the previous year).

The number of workers decreased by 1.9% (increased by 3.5% in the previous year) and the volume of wages increased by 1.3% (6.2% in the previous year).

According to the data released today, in March 2021 the total remuneration varied between 769 euros in the activities of ‘agriculture, animal production, hunting, forestry and fishing’ and 3,218 euros in the activities of ‘electricity, gas, steam, hot and cold water and cold air’.

In relation to the same period of 2020, the largest increase in total remuneration was observed in the activities of ‘electricity, gas, steam, hot and cold water and cold air’ (7.3%), followed by ‘administrative activities and support ‘(5.0%).

On the other hand, decreases were observed in the activities of ‘public administration and defense’; ‘Mandatory Social Security (minus 0.4%) and in the activities of’ transport and storage ‘(minus 0.2%).

In the institutional sector of Public Administration (PA) there was a year-on-year increase in total remuneration of 0.7%, from 1,629 euros in March 2020 to 1,641 euros in the same month of 2021.

In the private sector, total remuneration registered a year-on-year variation higher than that of the Public Administration sector (3.3%), going from 1,100 to 1,137 euros.

INE explains that “the differences in the average remuneration levels between the PA sector and the private sector reflect, among others, differences in the type of work performed and in the qualifications of the workers who integrate them”, being that “the workers of the PA sector have, on average, higher levels of education ”.

Distinguishing the evolution of remunerations between companies that resorted, at least in one month, to the simplified lay-off schemes and exceptional support to the family (‘lay-off companies’) and the companies that never did (‘ companies not lay-off ‘), it can be seen that the workers of the former register average base wages below the average of the economy (10.9% below in March 2021) and the second above that average (14.9%).


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