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Personal Finance and Welfare, Social Statistics
Uwe Pedersen
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Indices of Average Earnings for the Private Sector (Discontinued)

The index of average earnings comprises all employees, salaried employees (white collar employee or officials) and wage-earners (blue collar workers) as well as apprentices and young people under 18 years employed in a business enterprise with 10 or more persons in the private sector. The entire private sector is covered by the indices, including e.g. employees in private schools and private hospitals. Still, the index does not include enterprises belonging to either the agriculture or fisheries industries. In accordance with the nomenclature DB07 (Danish Industrial Classification 2007), the the index is broken down by industry and since the third quarter of 2008 published at the most detailed level according to the 36-grouping in DB07. For a period between the first quarter of 2005 and the second quarter of 2008, the indices were only published at the 10-grouping level.

Data description

The index of average earnings shows the development of the total wage per hour in private and public enterprises with at least 10 employees, divided into different industries. The index of average earnings covers the total wage paid inclusive of both the employer's and employee's contributions to the pension scheme, but exclusive of holiday payments and other irregular payments, such as bonuses. The total wage paid is, as a principle, measured against the number of hours actually worked.

Classification system

The index is published to show data on average earnings for different groups of industry in accordance with Statistics Denmark's 10- and 36-standard groupings of industries, see Danish Industrial Classifications 2007.

Sector coverage

The sector Corporations and Organizations covers all private and public enterprises not belonging to the sector Public Administration, Central Government.

Statistical concepts and definitions

Wage: Remuneration paid in cash by the employer to the employee for work done.

Payments for holidays: Extra payments paid by the employer to the employee for holidays. The payment is often computed as a fraction of the monthly wages.

Wages and Salaries: Information on wages and salaries for all employees working in the public sector.

Payments for pension schemes: Payments for pension schemes

Irregular Payments: Payments received on an irregular basis , including e.g. bonuses, regulation of wage, compensation for not holding vacation, etc.

Enterprise: An enterprise is a company or organisation involved in economic activity e.g. by producing and selling products.

Statistical unit

The counting unit is the individual employment in a public or private enterprise - not belonging to the sector public administration, central government - with ten employees or more.

Statistical population

Employees in private corporations and organisations.

Reference area

The index of the average earnings of Corporations and Organisations covers workers employed in enterprises and local units based in Denmark.

Time coverage

First quarter of 2005 to fourth quarter of 2017.

Base period

First quarter 2005 is the base period, where the value of the index is equal to 100.

Unit of measure

The unit of measure is the index points.

Reference period

The census date is a pay period (month or 2-week period) in the second month of a quarter.

Frequency of dissemination

The statistics are published quarterly.

Legal acts and other agreements

According to the Act on Statistics Denmark, section 8, all businessmen shall supply information about e.g. wages when requested by Statistics Denmark. Information obtained from the quarterly data collection with respect to earnings and hours of work is used in the statistics on earnings and employment compiled by the EU. In particular reference is made to the Regulation (EC) No 450/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council concerning the labour cost index.

Cost and burden

The system for data collection in the field of earnings statistics is set up as a generally integrated system, which is designed to supply data for official national statistics, for EU statistics and for statistics on earnings and labour costs, compiled by other international organisations. The overall response burden is thus reduced by setting up a system designed to supply data for a variety of statistics. When work on setting up the new system for data collection was being conducted, great emphasis was widely attached to make use of existing administrative data stored by the business enterprises as well as to explore, as far as possible, the potentials of the latest computer technology for efficient and rational collection and reporting of data. The response burden for both collection of the quarterly index of earnings and the yearly structure of earnings statistics was calculated to be DKK 6.3 million according to an analysis performed by AMVAB.


For further information, visit the subject page on Earnings and labour costs or contact Statistics Denmark.