(09 April 2018) – In 2017, average hourly labour costs in the whole economy (excluding agriculture and public administration) were estimated to be €26.8 in the European Union (EU) and €30.3 in the euro area.
However, this average masks significant gaps between EU Member States, with the lowest hourly labour costs recorded in Bulgaria (€4.9), Romania (€6.3), Lithuania (€8.0), Latvia (€8.1), Hungary (€9.1) and Poland (€9.4), and the highest in Denmark (€42.5), Belgium (€39.6), Luxembourg (€37.6), Sweden (€36.6) and France (€36.0).
Hourly labour costs in industry were €27.4 in the EU and €33.4 in the euro area. In services, they were €26.6 and €29.3, respectively. In construction, hourly labour costs were €23.7 in the EU and €26.7 in the euro area. In the mainly non-business economy (excluding public administration), they were €27.2 and €30.1, respectively.
Labour costs consist of wages & salaries and non-wage costs (e.g. employers’ social contributions). The share of non-wage costs in total labour costs for the whole economy was 24.0% in the EU and 25.9% in the euro area. It ranged from 6.7% in Malta to 32.8% in France.