Labour cost comparison across EU countries for 2017: Germany ranking sixth

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Source: Destatis Statistisches Bundesamt – In English Enlarge pictureWIESBADEN – Employers in the German industry and the support services sector paid an average of 34.50 euros per hour worked in 2017. The Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) also reports that Germany ranked sixth within the European Union (EU) in terms of the labour cost level, one place higher than in 2016. Compared with the EU average of 26.30 euros, German employers paid 31% more per hour worked. However, compared with our neighbouring country France (36.80 euros), which ranked fifth, it was just under 6% less. Denmark had the highest labour costs per hour worked (43.60 euros), Bulgaria the lowest (4.90 euros).
As regards manufacturing, which is particularly subject to international competition, the price of one hour worked in Germany averaged 40.20 euros in 2017. Here, Germany ranked fourth among the EU countries. The price of one hour worked in the German industry was 49% higher than the EU average (27.00 euros) and just above 6% higher than in France (38.10 euros). Regarding market services, labour costs amounted to 31.50 euros per hour worked. In this respect, Germany ranked ninth in Europe (20% above the EU average and 14% below the costs in France).
Labour costs consist of gross earnings and non-wage costs. In 2017, employers in the German industry and the support services sector paid an additional 28 euros of non-wage costs per 100 euros of gross earnings. This means that non-wage costs in Germany were below the EU average of 31 euros. Among the EU countries, Germany ranked in the middle (15th position). The highest non-wage costs per 100 euros of wage were paid in Sweden (49 euros), France (46 euros) and Belgium (43 euros), the lowest in Malta (9 euros). The main component of non-wage costs is the employers’ social contributions, that is, especially the employers’ statutory social security contributions, expenditure on employee pension schemes and expenditure on continued pay in case of sickness. 
Labour costs per hour worked in 2017, eurosStatus of calculations: 4th quarter of 2017
European UnionMember States1
Industry and the supportservices sector
Including
Manufacturing
Market services
EUR
Change on 2016in % 2
EUR
Rank
EUR
Rank

1 An a descending order by the labour cost level in industry and the support services sector.2 The rates of change are calendar adjusted and have been calculated in the relevant national currency.
Source: own calculations on the basis of Eurostat data of 30 April 2018.

European Union (EU 28)
26.30
2.2
27.00

26.30

Euro currency area (EU 19)
30.60
1.8
32.80

29.30

  Denmark
43.60
1.7
44.10
1
44.30
1
  Belgium
41.70
1.2
43.90
2
41.10
3
  Sweden
41.70
1.9
42.00
3
41.30
2
  Luxembourg
37.30
2.2
31.70
10
40.50
4
  France
36.80
1.4
38.10
5
36.50
5
  Germany
34,50
2.2
40,20
4
31.50
9
  Netherlands
34.10
1.9
36.80
6
33.40
6
  Austria
33.70
2.4
36.10
8
32.60
7
  Finland
33.40
–0.8
36.20
7
32.00
8
  Ireland
29.80
2.1
31.70
9
28.80
10
  Italy
27.30
0.9
27.40
11
27.40
11
  United Kingdom
26.80
2.7
26.20
12
26.70
12
  Spain
21.30
0.7
23.00
13
20.60
13
  Slovenia
16.90
5.6
17.00
12
17.50
14
  Cyprus
15.90
1.0
13.00
17
16.40
15
  Greece
14.30
2.8
14.70
15
14.30
17
  Portugal
13.40
1.7
11.60
18
14.60
16
  Malta
12.80
2.2
13.30
16
13.00
18
  Estonia
12.20
7.8
11.20
20
12.50
19
  Slovenia
11.40
6.1
11.40
19
11.40
21
  Czech Republic
11.30
7.7
11.00
21
11.50
20
  Croatia
9.20
5.3
8.00
24
9.80
22
  Hungary
9.20
8.4
8.90
22
9.40
23
  Poland
9.00
6.8
8.20
23
9.10
24
  Latvia
8.50
6.6
7.70
26
8.80
25
  Lithuania
8.20
9.6
5.50
25
8.50
26
  Romania
6.10
12.9
5.50
27
6.70
27
  Bulgaria
4.90
11.0
4.20
28
5.20
28

Non-wage costs in relation to gross earningsin industry and the support services sector in 2017 
European UnionMember States
Employers paid an additional x euros of non-wagecosts per 100 euros of gross earnings
EUR
Rank
Source: own calculations on the basis of Eurostat data of 3 May 2018.
European Union (EU 28)


Euro currency area (EU 19)


Sweden
49
1
France
46
2
Belgium
43
3
Greece
41
4
Lithuania
41
5
Slovakia
37
6
Czech Republic
37
7
Italy
37
8
Estonia
36
9
Austria
36
10
Spain
35
11
Netherlands
31
12
Germany
28
13
Portugal
27
14
Latvia
26
15
Finland
26
16
Romania
25
17
Hungary
24
18
Poland
22
19
Slovenia
20
20
Cyprus
20
21
United Kingdom
19
22
Bulgaria
18
23
Ireland
18
24
Kroatia
18
25
Denmark
16
26
Luxembourg
14
27
Malta
9
28
Time series on labour costs in Germany in a breakdown by economic branch are available in the GENESIS-Online database under the search word “Jahresschätzung Arbeitskosten”. Further official EU statistics are available under “Europe in Figures”.
For further information:Walter Engel,tel: +49 (0) 611 / 75 26 89,contact form

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