Real wages still below 1998 level
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-07-22 05:12 PM
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Real wages early this year stayed below the level first reached 16 years ago when inflation was taken into account, reports said Tuesday.

The Cabinet’s Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics announced Tuesday that the average wage for employees in the industrial and service sector between January and May of this year stood at NT$51,906 (US$1,730). Taking inflation into account, the real figure amounted to NT$50,219 (US$1,674), lower than the NT$50,553 (US$1,685) reached in 1998, reports said.

The wage figure could be split up into a basic amount of NT$37,918 (US$1,264) a month and added year-end and overtime bonuses of NT$13,988 (US$466). The net wage had risen by 1.39 percent from the same period one year earlier, but the added amounts went up by 15.55 percent, mainly because the economic recovery allowed employers to hand out larger year-end bonuses before the Lunar New Year, reports said.

Wages over the period of January to May 2014 might have been 16.85 percent higher than in the same period in 1998, but the Consumer Price Index over the same period rose by 17.83 percent in 2014 compared to 16 years before, reports said.

When comparing the statistics for this year’s January to May to the same period in 1999, the average net wage without taking bonuses into account had risen by 16.09 percent, but the CPI by 17.07 percent, reports said.

The DGBAS on Tuesday also announced the latest official unemployment data for June, putting the jobless rate at 3.92 percent. The figure was the lowest for a month of June since 2000, though it marked a rise from 3.85 percent in May because of the higher numbers of school leavers trying to enter the job market, reports said.

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