The average wage in the second quarter was CZK 38,275. Compared to the same period last year, it increased by less than four thousand. Healthcare and social services workers started to earn more. The median wage reached CZK 32,408. This is based on the latest data from the Czech Statistical Office.
Nominal wage growth is the highest since 2008, and it increased by 9.9 percent during the first quarter. The growth in the purchasing power of Czech wages was also a record high. After taking inflation into account, we can buy 8.2 percent more goods. Such an increase in real wages has not yet occurred in this century.
“The year-on-year indices are largely influenced by the low comparative base of Q2 2020,” the Czech Statistical Office points out in the accompanying press release. In fact, both nominal (down 0.6 percent) and real (down 3.6 percent) wages fell between April and June last year.
Distortion by last year’s decline
Statisticians also pointed out that wage developments were highly differentiated. Nominal wages fell by 1.6 percent in the financial sector, while employees in the health and social care sectors improved the most. Their average wage increased by 43.8 percent year on year.
Here, however, the payment of exceptional bonuses for deployment during the coronavirus pandemic was reflected. In contrast, public administration salaries rose by only 0.8 percent.
But economists say such wage growth is unsustainable. “For the whole of this year, however, (nominal wages) will add only four percent, as the sharp rise in the second quarter was a one-off,” Lukas Kovanda, chief economist at Trinity Bank, explained.
Komerční banka analyst Jana Steckerová said the wage increase of more than 11 percent exceeded market expectations.