Romania’s net average wage exceeds EUR 1,000 for the first time in December 2023

Romania’s net average wage exceeds EUR 1,000 for the first time in December 2023

The net average wage in Romania increased by 15% y/y in December 2023 to RON 5,079 (EUR 1,022), breaking the EUR 1,000 threshold for the first time – indeed, helped by the yearend bonuses, according to data published by the statistics office INS. In real terms, the net wages increased by 8.3% y/y.

The last quarter of 2023 marked a steep advance of the real wages in Romania as the headline inflation diminished. Thus, the average 15.9% y/y nominal advance in the quarter (+14.9% y/y in Q3) translated into +8.2% y/y real advance of the average net earnings derived by Romanian employees (RON 4,845 or EUR 975 per month) in Q3.

The higher incomes, not only in Q4 but also in the previous three months, surfaced in brighter retail sales figures in the last quarter of 2023: the non-food sales accelerated to +4.5% y/y from +2.3% y/y in Q3, and the food sales to +4.3% y/y from +1.4% y/y in Q3. 

Further advancement of incomes (wages, pensions), particularly in the budgetary sector, will keep private consumption as a more relevant growth driver this year. Wage hikes have already been promised in the budgetary sector, and a massive pension rise is expected for September.

Except for agriculture, forestry, and chemical industry, the average wage in all sectors of activity increased in real terms (meaning more than the average 6.43% y/y average inflation) in Q3.

The sectors where the net wage posted double-digit real growth in Q3 were many: oil processing (+18.1% y/y, resulting in the highest net wage among Romania’s economy at par with IT&C), water transportation (+32% y/y), clothing (+17% y/y, on very low incomes), education (+19.4% y/y, which brought the incomes in this sector very close to the economy-wide average), the manufacturing of other (than automobiles) transport means (+15.4% y/y), and the coal mining (+18% y/y).

(Photo source: Aaron Amat/

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