According to a Thursday press release by Statistics Estonia, the average monthly gross income per employee was €1,073 in 2016. The growth of gross income continued at the same rate as in previous years at six percent, however the number of people receiving income began to decrease for the first time since the years of the economic crisis.
In counties, the average monthly gross income per employee was primarily in the range of €900-1,200, exceeding €1,000 in Harju, Tartu, Hiiu and Rapla Counties and falling below €900 only in Ida-Viru County.
The average monthly gross income varied greatly among local government units, with a two-fold difference between the local government unit with the highest and the lowest gross monthly income. The highest monthly gross income per employee, €1,505, was earned in the municipalities of Harju County, led by Viimsi Municipality. At the other end were the Tartu County municipalities of Piirissaare and Peipsiääre and the town of Kallaste, where the gross income was below €800 per month.
The number of persons receiving gross income was slightly below 520,000, a decrease of nearly 350 persons compared to 2015 figures. The main reason behind the decline in the number of income recipients is the fact that the number of young people aged under 25 has continuously decreased in recent years. Before the financial crisis, the number of young income recipients was close to 64,000; in 2016, it was 34,000. The number of income recipients in the 50-62 age group also decreased by 700 persons. The number of income recipients grew among the population aged 25-49 and 63 and over, but less than in the previous years.
The number of income recipients decreased in most counties, with the exception of a small increase in Harju, Tartu and Saare counties. The decrease in the number of young employees was also prevalent in counties, especially in Ida-Viru and Järva Counties, where the number of income recipients under 25 years of age fell by ten percent compared to 2015.
Over a half, or 53 percent, of income recipients were women and their average monthly gross income was €948. The average monthly gross income of men, meanwhile, was €1,214. As the dataset does not enable distinguishing between full-time and part-time employees and analyzing by economic activities, the reasons for the difference in men's and women's monthly gross wages do not appear from the data.
Editor: Aili Vahtla