Economy: Luxembourg has seen the second lowest increase in hourly labour costs so far this year in the euro zone and in the EU, a new report has found.
Total wages and allowances, employer taxes and social charges--divided by hours worked--rose 0.9% in the Grand Duchy between the first quarter of 2011 and the first quarter of 2012, according to figures released by Eurostat on Thursday.
The biggest increases were seen in the construction sector (2.5%) and the lowest in services (0.7%).
Luxembourg was below the euro zone first quarter average of two percent and the EU average of 1.7%.
The only lower figure in the euro zone was for Slovenia, where hourly labour costs shrank by -1.2%, and within the entire EU, in the UK, where costs held steady at zero percent.
Among neighbouring country, France gained 2.2% and Belgium 3.1%. Figures for Germany were not available, the EU’s statistics agency said.
The highest rises in Europe were seen in Estonia (7.2%), Bulgaria (6.8%), Austria (5.3%) and Romania (5.2%).
However, during the fourth quarter of 2011, hourly labour costs rose 4.2% from the same quarter the year before, while the euro zone figure was 2.8% and the EU gain was 2.7%.