Wages show fastest growth in 15 years

The average gross wage has topped Kč 30,000 for the first time

Wages are up in the Czech Republic compared to last year. In the first quarter of 2018, the average gross monthly nominal wage per full-time equivalent (FTE) employee was Kč 30.265, which was Kč 2,385 or 8.6 percent more than in the same period of 2017, according to the Czech Statistical Office (ČSÚ).

It was the fastest real year-on-year growth since the Q1 2003.

The increase in wages was higher than inflation. In Q1 2018 consumer prices grew by 1.9 percent, so wages increased by 6.6 percent in real terms.

The wage volume grew by 10.8 percent and the number of employees increased by 2.1 percent.

Compared to the previous quarter, the seasonally adjusted average wage in Q1 2018 increased by 2.2 percent.

The median wage was Kč 25,674, and it increased by 8.3 percent compared to the same period in 2017. Men still earned more than women. The median wage for men was Kč 28,031 and for women was Kč 23,084. Some 80 percent of employees earned wages between Kč 12,135 and Kč 48,199.

The tight labor market has put pressure on wages. Since January 2018, the minimum wage has increased from Kč 11,000 to Kč 12,200.

Prague has the highest wages of the country, with the average gross monthly nominal wage at Kč 38,456, up 7 percent from the first quarter of last year. The Central Bohemia region was second at Kč 30,096, up 8 percent. South Moravia, which includes Brno, was third with Kč 29,346, up 8.7 percent.

The lowest average wage was in the Karlovy Vary region, at Kč 26,287, but it was up 10.1 percent, which was the highest increase.

The average gross monthly nominal wage is a share of wage funds for one employee per month. Data shows that roughly two-thirds of employees fall below the national average.

The median wage represents a value of an employee wage in the middle of the wage distribution. That means one-half of the wages is lower and the second half of the wages are higher than the median wage.

Employers pay, from the gross wages, amounts for premiums for health insurance and social security, income tax advances of natural persons, and other statutory deductions. The employees are paid net wages.

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