Collective Bargaining Wages Rise By 2.2% Until February, When The CPI Rose To 7.6%

obras 11 1000x528 777x400 1

According to data from the Ministry of Labour, wages agreed in collective agreements rose by an average of 2.26% up to February, two tenths more than in January and almost eight tenths above the average for 2021 (1.47%). However, this is far off the CPI, whose final figure for the second month of the year was 7.6%, the highest rate in almost 36 years.

Most of the agreements registered up to February in the Labour statistics were signed in previous years, even if they come into effect in 2022. Specifically, up to February, a total of 1,694 collective agreements with economic effects for that period were registered, of which only 19 were signed this year, with an average wage increase of 2.59%. The remaining 1,675 were signed in previous years, with an average wage increase of 2.26%. The 1,694 agreements registered up to February covered more than 4.38 million workers.

This wage increase is below the 3.6% rise agreed between the government and the unions for the minimum interprofessional wage (SMI). It is also somewhat more in line with the guidelines set out in the Interconfederal Agreement for Employment and Collective Bargaining (AENC) 2018-2020. This proposed wage rises of around 2% plus one percentage point linked to concepts such as productivity, business results and absenteeism.

This AENC, which was in force until last year, is waiting for the unions and employers to update its content for the next two or three years. For the time being, they have already begun negotiations to try to renew it and next Tuesday they will hold a new meeting.

CCOO and UGT are aware they cannot ask for wage rises that equal or come close to the current CPI rate. They have warned that the percentages they will propose to CEOE and Cepyme in the framework of this negotiation will depend on whether the employers are willing to accept revision clauses that prevent losses of purchasing power annually or at the end of the period of validity of the NCA. For their part, employers are calling for wage moderation and are opposed, a priori, to establishing clauses in agreements linked to the CPI.

About the Author

The Corner
The Corner has a team of on-the-ground reporters in capital cities ranging from New York to Beijing. Their stories are edited by the teams at the Spanish magazine Consejeros (for members of companies’ boards of directors) and at the stock market news site Consenso Del Mercado (market consensus). They have worked in economics and communication for over 25 years.