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Budapest, January 21 (MTI) – The average gross wage in Hungary was 264,468 forints (EUR 840) in November, up by 5.3 percent from the same month a year earlier, the Central Statistical Office (KSH) said on Thursday.

The average net wage rose at the same pace to 173,228 forints during the period.

Real wages climbed by 4.8 percent as consumer prices edged up by 0.5 percent for the month.

Excluding the 171,400 Hungarians in fostered work programmes, the average gross wage rose by 6.1 percent to 279,164 forints, while net wages increased at the same rate to 182,854 forints. Full-time fostered workers earned gross 79,912 forints on average during the month.

About 2,911,800 people were employed in Hungary in November. A little more than 66 percent worked in the private sector, while just under 30 percent worked in the public sector and about 4 percent were employed by non-profits.

KSH said the November wage increase was influenced by a pay rise for the armed forces and a wage supplement paid to social sector employees.

Gergely Suppan, analyst at Takarekbank, projected gross wage growth of 4 percent for this year. Net wages could climb 5.5 percent because of tax changes, he added.

Vivien Barczel and Gergely Urmossy of Erste Bank put gross wage growth this year between 3 and 4 percent and net wage growth over 5 percent.

Peter Cseresnyes, state secretary at the economy ministry, said wages had been rising for 35 consecutive months. Commenting on KSH’s fresh data, he told a press conference that families will be able to spend more as a result of rising wages, which is thanks to a growing economy, low inflation and the government’s job protection schemes.

Hungary’s personal income tax rate was reduced to 15 percent from 16 percent this year.


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