Monday, March 15, 2010

Minimum Wages in Europe

Google Public Data has been expanded. Below are charts based on the minimum wage data-set for European countries (for a random selection of countries). Unsurprisingly, Ireland is at or near the top in both cases. It is also possible to take logs of these series. If, like me, you want to read more about where this data comes from, here is the link to the Eurostat page. Scroll along the charts to see wage levels at any point in time (other countries fade out).

1. National minimum wages in Euros per month before deduction of income tax and social security contributions. Not adjusted for inflation. In euro.



2. National minimum wages in Euros per month before deduction of income tax and social security contributions. Not adjusted for inflation. In terms of purchasing power parity.

4 comments:

Kevin Denny said...

Very interesting graph though the mean may not be that informative. Need to know where it stands in the distribution & how it is for particular groups. In France, its young workers that are really hit because of the structure of the system - at least thats my recollection.
Still, given the high unemployment in Irreland rate its not a good sign.

Martin Ryan said...

Kevin,

I believe that minimums may also vary across some sectors of the economy, though I stand to be corrected...

Kevin Denny said...

In Ireland, we had these industry minima - in some sectors like hospitality & ag', they are set by "Joint councils". When the national minimum wage was introduced they were retained, of course. Obviously they are at least as high as the NMW - effectively its a form of collective bargaining I think.

Martin Ryan said...

Indeed, there has been recent media coverage about the minima in the restaurant business i.e. restauranteurs want the minimum reduced.

I was also interested in the clustering that seems apparent:

(i) Ireland, France, UK
(ii) Spain, Malta, Greece
(iii) Czech Republic, Poland
(iv) Romania, Bulgaria

This could be a function of geographical proximity.

I've done a new post on unemployment rates (using Google Public Data). A crude story is that France and the UK have somewhat similar minimum wage rates to Ireland; however, they also have much lower unemployment rates...