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ECONOMY

Job Vacancy Rate in The Euro Area at 2.3% in The First Quarter of 2019

Job Vacancy Rate in The Euro Area at 2.3% in The First Quarter of 2019

The job vacancy rate in the euro area (EA19) was 2.3% in the first quarter of 2019, stable compared with the previous quarter and up from 2.1% in the first quarter of 2018, according to figures published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

In the EU28, the job vacancy rate was 2.4% in the first quarter of 2019, up from 2.3% in the previous quarter and from 2.2% in the first quarter of 2018.

In Cyprus the job vacancy rate was 2.0% in Q1 2019, up compared to 1.0%  in Q4 2018 and 1.2 in Q1 2018. In Greece the same rate was 0.6% in Q1 2019 up from 0.4% in Q4 2018 and down from 0.7% in Q1 2018.

In the euro area, the job vacancy rate in the first quarter of 2019 was 2.0% in industry and construction, and 2.6% in services. In the EU28, the rate was 2.2% in industry and construction, and 2.6% in services.

Among the Member States for which comparable data are available, the highest job vacancy rates in the first quarter of 2019 were recorded in Czechia (6.4%), Belgium (3.6%) and Germany (3.3%). In contrast, the lowest rates were observed in Greece (0.6%), Spain (0.9%) and Portugal, Ireland and Bulgaria (all 1.0%). Compared with the same quarter of the previous year, the job vacancy rate in the first quarter of 2019 rose in fourteen Member States, remained stable in nine but fell in Greece, Croatia, Lithuania, Poland and Malta (all by -0.1 percentage points – pp). The largest increases were registered in Czechia (+1.6 pp), Cyprus (+0.8 pp), Latvia (+0.6 pp), Germany and the Netherlands (both +0.4 pp).

Meanwhile, hourly labour costs rose by 2.4% in the euro area (EA19) and by 2.6% in the EU28 in the first quarter of 2019, compared with the same quarter of the previous year. In the fourth quarter of 2018, hourly labour costs increased by 2.3% and 2.8% respectively.

The two main components of labour costs are wages & salaries and non-wage costs. In the euro area, the cost of wages & salaries per hour worked grew by 2.5% and the non-wage component by 2.2% in the first quarter of 2019 compared with the same quarter of the previous year. In the fourth quarter of 2018, the annual changes were +2.3% and +2.4% respectively. In the EU28, the costs of hourly wages & salaries rose by 2.7% and the non-wage component rose by 2.1% in the first quarter of 2019. In the fourth quarter of 2018, annual changes were +3.0% and +2.3% respectively.

In the first quarter of 2019 compared with the same quarter of the previous year, hourly labour costs in the euro area rose by 2.5% in industry, by 2.3% in construction, by 2.4% in services and by 2.5% in the (mainly) nonbusiness economy. In the EU28, labour costs per hour grew by 2.4% in industry, by 2.0% in construction, by 2.5% in services, and by 2.8% in the (mainly) non-business economy. In the first quarter of 2019, the highest annual increases in hourly labour costs for the whole economy were registered in Romania (+16.3%) and Bulgaria (+12.9%), while the only decrease was recorded in Greece (-0.2%).

Ιn Cyprus the total wage cost increased by 3.4% in Q1 2019 (3.0 wage and 5.7 non wage component), after rising by 3.3%  (3.4 / 3.0) in Q4 2018 and 2.5% (2.5 / 2.4) in Q1 2018.

In Greece the total wage cost decreased by -0.2% (0.3 wage and -1.8 non wage component) in Q1 2019, after 2.5% increase in Q4 2018 (2.0 / 4.4) and 4.4% increase in Q1 2018 (4.2 / 5.2).

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