Most salaried workers still see their wages grow less than average prices so far this year, although a growing share of them are slowly recovering some of the sharp loss in purchasing power they have experienced since the end of 2021. The advance data of the collective agreements registered until July 31, known this Tuesday, indicates that the agreed salary increase (in revised or newly signed agreements) for practically nine million employees in the first seven months of the year was of 3.34%. This means that, if one takes into account that prices have increased by around 3.81% on average between January and July (2.3% year-on-year in the past month), the majority of employees with their regulated conditions in the agreement, it still loses about half a point of purchasing power in annual average terms.
However, the figures published by the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, which are still estimates for 2022 and 2023, indicate that if only the 179,738 agreements signed during the first seven months of 2023 are taken, the average salary increase rises to 4 .18%, with which the 2.16 million workers affected by these agreements (of the total of 9 million with their closed agreement) would indeed be experiencing a slight gain in purchasing power of almost four tenths.
In fact, given that this statistic always reflects averaged data, the number of workers who up to now have registered wage increases higher than the accumulated average inflation so far this year would be somewhat higher, since it indicates that around 3.5 Millions of employees have experienced a remuneration advance agreed upon in an agreement of almost 5% this year (including agreements signed in 2023 and previous years).
Although if we consider the high level at which underlying inflation is anchored —which does not include energy products or unprocessed food—, which stood at an average of 6.7% between January and July, the losses in purchasing power for this type of purchase would be widespread among workers and would explain why the vast majority of citizens do not fully notice the drop in prices in their day-to-day purchases.
These data would therefore be showing the first effects of the Agreement for Employment and Collective Bargaining (AENC), agreed upon by the union and employer leadership last May, which includes as a recommendation for negotiators of collective agreements salary increases of 4 % for this year and 3% for 2024 and 2025, incorporating a review clause with increases of up to an additional 1% if inflation exceeds these increases, with the aim of recovering wages.
Precisely, the presence of these salary review clauses in the agreements was required by the unions as an essential condition to sign the AENC in 2022, something that the employers initially refused and for this reason the signing of the agreement was not possible until mid-2023. Although, despite the absence of AENC and, therefore, of recommendation of clauses, the stubbornness of the price rise experienced last year has meant that these salary guarantees protect more than two million as of today. of workers, almost one in four of those who have already signed their working conditions for this year.
The pace of collective bargaining continued to accelerate in July, so that by the end of last month 2,885 of these collective agreements had been agreed or renewed, 19% more than in the same month a year ago. These agreements affected almost nine million salaried workers, which represented an increase of 30% compared to July 2022.
Where do wages go up the most?
In general terms, and taking into account the agreements signed in previous years and reviewed up to July of this year, the sectoral agreements of a higher scope than the company registered higher wage increases (3.36%) than those signed within the company. of companies, where the average salary increase up to July was barely 3%.
While sectorally, the good progress of the tourist campaign is pulling up salaries in the sectors related to these activities. Thus, the agreed salaries grow by an average of 4% for almost 90,000 workers in artistic and entertainment activities and practically 4% also for more than a million wage earners in the hospitality industry. On the contrary, the puncture experienced by affiliation in the special agricultural system last July was not reflected in a worse wage performance, since the average wage increase for more than 318,000 wage earners in the agricultural sector was among the highest (3 .63%).
In the low band of salary increases, below 3%, there were various activities such as energy supply (1.96%), information and communications (2.63%); real estate (2.31%); public administration (2.54%); education (2.76%).
The negative side of the improvement in agreed wages is reflected in the increase in non-applications of the agreement. This consists of a business operation, which is usually agreed with the workers, so as not to apply any content of the company’s reference collective agreement, and the non-application of the agreed salary increases is the most common. In the first seven months of 2023, a total of 413 derogations from agreements have been deposited in the records of the labor authorities, adopted by 362 companies and affecting 17,909 workers. These figures represent an increase of almost 19% in the case of the number of applications and a rise of 29% in the number of workers affected by these breaches of the agreement.
Follow all the information on Economy and Business on Facebook and Twitteror in our weekly newsletter
Five Days agenda
The most important economic appointments of the day, with the keys and the context to understand their scope.
RECEIPT IN TU CORREO
#wages #agreed #year #rise #average #majority #workers #lose #purchasing #power