Hourly labour costs in the Euro Area increased 2.4 percent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2019, following a 2.3 growth in the previous three-month period and missing market expectations of 2.6 percent. By economic activity, hourly labour costs rose by 2.5 percent in industry, by 2.3 percent in construction, by 2.4 percent in services and by 2.5 percent in the (mainly) nonbusiness economy. Among Eurozone's largest economies, labour cost growth picked up in Germany (2.5 percent vs 2.0 percent), France (2.7 percent vs 2.5 percent), Italy (2.6 percent vs 2.1 percent) and Spain (2.5 percent vs 1.2 percent). By contrast, labour costs advanced at a softer pace in Ireland (2.0 percent vs 2.6 percent) and the Netherlands (1.5 percent vs 2.8 percent), while fell in Greece (-0.2 percent vs 2.5 percent). Labour Costs in the Euro Area averaged 96.69 Index Points from 2009 until 2019, reaching an all time high of 110.60 Index Points in the fourth quarter of 2018 and a record low of 83.30 Index Points in the first quarter of 2009.
Labour Costs in Euro Area is expected to be 116.37 Index Points by the end of this quarter, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations. Looking forward, we estimate Labour Costs in Euro Area to stand at 119.52 in 12 months time. In the long-term, the Euro Area Labour Costs is projected to trend around 125.44 Index Points in 2020, according to our econometric models.