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Real earnings edge higher in April, still lower than 1998
Central News Agency
2014-06-23 06:48 PM
Taipei, June 23 (CNA) Average real monthly earnings in Taiwan in the first four months of the year rose nearly 4 percent from the same period of 2013 but still remained lower than in 1998, according to the latest figures released by the government statistics bureau.

Real monthly earnings, defined as a worker's regular salary plus irregular income such as year-end bonuses, performance bonuses and overtime, averaged NT$52,087 per month from January to April after being adjusted for inflation, up 3.68 percent from a year earlier. But that remained below the NT$52,810 averaged from January to April in 1998, the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said Monday. Real monthly salary (without irregular income) averaged NT$36,686 during the four-month period, up 0.36 percent year-on-year, but still at about the same level it was in 1999, DGBAS statistics showed.

Both figures indicated that general wage levels in Taiwan have yet to recover from the 2008-2009 global financial crisis. Real monthly earnings plummeted 9.03 percent in the first four months of 2009 to NT$48,318, from NT$53,117 the previous year, and have yet to exceed NT$53,000 for the same period again since then.

Before adjusting for inflation, average monthly earnings rose 4.73 percent year-on-year in the first four months to NT$53,769 -- the highest in history -- pushed higher by the stable recovery and more generous year-end and performance bonuses, the DGBAS said. Average regular salary before inflation was NT$37,871 in the January-to-June period, up 1.37 percent from a year earlier, while irregular income rose 13.69 percent to NT$15,898. In April alone, regular monthly salary (before inflation) in the industrial and services sectors averaged NT$38,061, up 0.29 percent from the previous month and up 1.55 percent from April 2013, according to the DGBAS statistics. Average monthly earnings in April (including both regular and irregular income) fell 0.82 percent from March but rose 1.6 percent year-on-year to NT$42,361, the DGBAS figures showed. (By Milly Lin and Elizabeth Hsu)

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