German wages rise on booming economy | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 29.10.2012
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German wages rise on booming economy

Wages in Germany continue to rise in 2012 as labor unions have secured higher pay deals encouraged by ongoing economic growth. In July, wages posted the biggest monthly gain in four years.

On average, wages in Germany rose 3.2 percent in July compared with the same month a year ago, accelerating a persistent trend for higher wages, Germany's Federal Statistics Office, Destatis, said in a quarterly report released Monday.

Destatis said July's rise was the strongest monthly increase since a 3.4 percent gain in October 2008, and followed higher wage gains of 2.2 percent and 2 percent in April and January respectively.

The office attributed the surge in average income to strong pay hikes for education and childcare workers, who saw their wages go up by 4 percent during that period. In addition, the income figure was boosted by an above-average 3.9 percent rise in manufacturing industries, notably in the metalworking and electrical sectors, but also in the chemical industry.

Social and healthcare workers were only able to secure rises that were below average at 2.9 percent. The same applied to the construction, finance and retail sectors, Destatis said, where wages had risen 2.3 percent by July of this year.

However, Destatis noted that inflation in Germany stood at 1.7 percent in July, meaning that parts of the wage hikes were being eaten up by rising prices.

uhe/dr (Reuters, AFP, dpa)