Trend in falling Italian real incomes reverses

Fall in inflation rate helps wages overtake price increases

Trend in falling Italian real incomes reverses

Rome, June 21 - A long trend of falls in real incomes in recession-hit Italy ended in May, Istat said on Friday. The national statistics agency said hourly wages for contracted employees increased 1.4% in May with respect to the same month in 2012, while the annual inflation rate was 1.1%. This means real incomes grew by 0.3% as wage rises outstripped price increases. Istat said the return to positive real incomes was due to a fall in the inflation rate, with the recession limiting price hikes, rather than bigger increases in wages. Indeed, May's wage levels were flat on April this year, the agency said.

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