Back number

No.217(2016/8/1)
Wage Hike Settlements in the 2016 Spring Struggle for a Better Life

On July 5 RENGO (Japanese Trade Union Confederation) carried out its final tally of wage hike settlements reached in the 2016 Spring Struggle for a Better Life. RENGO's survey revealed that 5,297 unions that had demanded average wage hikes for members and engaged in labour-management negotiations had reached settlements by that time.

The average wage hike obtained by these unions was 5,779 yen (about $56), an increase of 2.0% over the average wage before the hike. Of these unions, 3,952 unions with under 300 members had reached settlements. The average wage hike achieved by these small and medium-sized unions was 4,340 yen (about $42), an increase of 1.81% over the average wage before the hike.

A total of 293 unions had reached settlements concerning hourly wage hikes for nonregular workers. The average settlement saw the hourly wage rise by 18 yen (about $0.18) to 935 yen (about $9.2). Nonregular workers include part-timers and contract workers.

The improvement of working conditions for the nation's increasing number of nonregular workers, who now account for about 40% of the workforce, will raise standards for 2016 regional hourly minimum wages and push up the overall level of wages.

Summary Results of the 2015 Family Income and Expenditure Survey

The government in June released the results of its 2015 survey of family income and expenditure. The following is an outline of the results.

1. Expenditure of Two-or-More-Person Households
(1) The yearly average of monthly consumption expenditure per household was 287,373 yen, down 1.3% in nominal terms (the first downturn after a four-year rise) and down 2.3% in real terms (the second consecutive decrease) from the previous year.

(2) Among 10 major categories of consumption expenditure, spending on "Clothing & footwear," "Other consumption expenditures" (including social expenses, etc.), and "Culture & recreation" decreased in real terms year-on-year by 7.2%, 4.1%, and 4.0%, respectively.

(3) Spending on goods was 149,809 yen, down 2.1% in nominal terms and down 2.9% in real terms from the previous year. Spending on services was 109,644 yen, up 0.3% in nominal terms but down 0.9% in real terms from the previous year.

2. Income and Expenditure of Workers' Households: Two-or-More-Person Households
(1) The yearly average of monthly income per household was 525,669 yen, up 1.1% in nominal terms and up 0.1% in real terms over the previous year; the figure marked the first increase after an interval of two years.

(2) Nonconsumption expenditure was 98,398 yen, up 2.3% in nominal terms over the previous year. Among the categories of nonconsumption expenditure, direct taxes, such as earned income taxes and residence taxes, increased by 1.5% in nominal terms, and social insurance premiums, such as public pension insurance and health insurance, rose by 2.8% in nominal terms. The ratio of nonconsumption expenditure to income was 18.7%, up 0.2 percentage points over the previous year.

(3) Disposable income (that is, income minus nonconsumption expenditure) was 427,270 yen, up 0.9% in nominal terms but down 0.1% in real terms from the previous year.

(4) Consumption expenditure was 315,379 yen, down 1.1% in nominal terms and down 2.1% in real terms from the previous year; in real terms the figure decreased for the second consecutive year.

(5) The average propensity to consume (that is, the ratio of consumption expenditure to disposable income) was 73.8%, down 1.5 percentage points from the previous year. The surplus (that is, disposable income minus consumption expenditure) was 111,891 yen, up 6.8% in nominal terms over the previous year. The ratio of surplus to disposable income was 26.2%, up 1.5 percentage points over the previous year.

Copyright(C) JILAF All Rights Reserved.