The average gross wage for full-time workers in Hungary grew by an annual 11.2 percent to 364,400 forints (EUR 1,120) in May, the Central Statistical Office (KSH) said on Tuesday. Net wages grew at the same pace, to 242,300 forints.
Real wages rose by 7 percent, calculating with an annual inflation rate of 3.9 percent in May. In January-May, real wages were up 6.9 percent as net wages rose by 10.6 percent and consumer prices increased by 3.5 percent.
Excluding the 101,500 Hungarians in fostered work programmes, the average gross wage grew by 10.2 percent to 374,700 forints a month, while net wages grew at the same rate to 249,180 forints.
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Zoltán Marczinkó, the deputy state secretary of the finance ministry for labour affairs, said in an interview to public television M1 that high demand for labour was due to businesses investing, growing and developing, and wage growth followed suit.
He said wage growth in Hungary was unbroken for the past 77 months, rising by more than 80 percent since 2010. Further, wage growth in the private sector outstripped that in the public sector, he added.
Wages remained highest in the financial and infocommunications sectors, though growth rates in both sectors were below average. In farming, construction and trade, wage growth exceeded the average of 10.6 percent.
Marczinkó said investment levels were constantly increasing, and this was likely to continue both this year and next. ING Bank analyst Peter Virovácz attributed the acceleration in wage growth to a rise in pay in the public sector. Full-year wage growth of above 10 percent is possible, he said.
Takarékbank chief analyst András Horváth said the shortage of skilled labour and minimum wage rises continued to affect wage growth overall.
Featured photo by Attila Kovács/MTI.