Wages in Japan rises in January for first time in five months
Real wages in Japan increased in January for the first time in five months, mostly due to a change in the way inflation was calculated compared to the previous month, which led to lower price pressures on real wages, said the Japanese government.
“I don’t think that we can say wages have returned to pre-coronavirus levels,” said a labour ministry official, noting that overtime pay would take longer to recover from declines seen since the onset of the pandemic two years ago, Reuters reports.
Inflation-adjusted real wages, a gauge of households’ purchasing power, increased 0.4% year-on-year in January, registering its first increase in five months.
Nominal total-cash earnings rose 0.9% in January, after slipping by 0.4% in December. Official data also showed that regular pay rose 0.6% in the month. Overtime pay was up 4.4% year-on-year in January, increasing for the tenth straight month.
Meanwhile, special payments, which include the discretionary winter bonuses that businesses cut when they face headwinds, increased by 7.6% in January after a revised 1.1% fall the month prior.