Unbridled inflation is eroding income. The Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said in a report yesterday that nominal wages, while edging up 1.66 percent year-on-year in the first four months of this year to NT$37,043, posted the biggest negative growth since 1980 in terms of real wages.
DGBAS said the real wage between January and April saw a 1.92 percent decline in growth while the Consumer Price Index (CPI) jumped 3.65 percent.
Census Bureau Deputy Director Huang Jiann-jong (黃建中) placed the blame on mounting inflation pressures at home and abroad as well as other factors.
“The nominal wage rose 1.66 percent between January and April, the highest in eight years,” Huang told a media briefing.
“But the gain failed to match the rise in commodity prices, rendering the real wage to register the biggest negative growth in history,” he said.
Huang said rising fuel, food and raw material prices are to blame for the inflationary pressures, but corporate mergers and the privatization of state-owned enterprises have prompted companies to keep personnel outlays down to stay competitive.
Before 2000, real wages often saw a 5 percent growth, which slowed down to 1.5 percent in recent years, the report showed.
Kevin Hsiao (蕭正義), director of UBS AG’s Taipei branch, said the negative real wage growth would stay in the short run, because fuel and raw material costs are likely to remain high in the third quarter, thereby reducing the prospect that companies would be able to raise their corporate profit margins.
“Against this backdrop, most employers will be unwilling to raise their personnel expenditure,” Hsiao said in a telephone interview.
The negative real wage growth is likely to ease off in the fourth quarter, however, as falling fuel demand will be reflected in the CPI and other indicators, he said.
Airlines worldwide have cut passenger flights to reduce their fuel costs, which will help contain inflation and narrow the gap between real wage and commodity price growth, Hsiao said.
Meanwhile, the DGBAS said unemployment in Taiwan stood at 3.84 percent — or 416,000 people — last month, up 0.03 percent or 4,000 people from April.
An increase in the number of first-time job seekers and people unsatisfied with their old jobs were responsible for the rise, Huang said.
Seasonally adjusted unemployment stood at 3.89 percent last month, down 0.03 percentage points from April, the DGBAS report said.
That represented a dip of 0.04 percent year-on-year, the lowest in eight years, the agency said.
Unemployment in the first five months of the year averaged 3.85 percent, up 0.01 percentage points from the same period last year, the report said.
Job seekers aged 15 to 24 topped other age groups with 10.36 of them unemployed, followed by people aged between 24 and 44, who comprise 3.83 percent of the jobless population, the DGBAS report said.
Softbank Group Corp plans to keep a stake in the chip designer Arm Ltd, even if it sells a partial interest to Nvidia Corp, the Nikkei reported. The companies are negotiating terms, the newspaper reported, citing sources. Softbank might take a stake in Nvidia after it buys Arm, the report said. Nvidia and Arm might also merge through a share swap, and Softbank would become a major shareholder in the combined company, it said. The two parties aim to reach a deal in the next few weeks, the sources said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Nvidia is the
END TO SPECULATION: The hotel’s management contract has been extended, despite reports that it wanted to end its alliance with Hyatt Hotels over a deal with Riant Capital Singapore-based Hong Leong Hotel Development Ltd (豐隆大飯店股份) yesterday said it has extended a management contract to ensure the continued presence of the Grand Hyatt brand in Taipei, ending rumors that the two sides were parting ways. “We are pleased Hyatt is able to come to terms on the extension of the management contract of Grand Hyatt Taipei,” said Kwek Leng Beng (郭令明), executive chairman of City Developments Ltd (城市發展) and Millennium & Copthorne Hotels Ltd (千禧國敦酒店). Hong Leong Hotel Development is a subsidiary of Millennium, and both fall under the Hong Leong Group (豐隆集團). The Grand Hyatt Taipei (台北君悅大飯店), owned and built by
Gold surged to a fresh record on Friday, fueled by US dollar weakness and low interest rates, while silver headed for its best month since 1979. Spot bullion is up more than 10 percent this month, as US real yields lingered near record lows. While the ferocity of rallies in gold and silver cooled in the middle of the week, most market watchers predict there might be more gains ahead. Both metals have added about 30 percent this year, with gold and silver exchange-traded funds boosting holdings to a record, as concern about the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic fuels demand for
MOVING FROM CHINA? The article did not name the company, but Foxconn, Wistron and Pegatron were among firms chosen for a production-linked incentive plan in India An Apple Inc vendor is looking at shifting six production lines to India from China, which could result in US$5 billion of iPhone exports from the South Asian nation, the Times of India reported, citing people familiar with the matter who it did not identify. The establishment of the facility would create about 55,000 jobs over about a year, the newspaper reported, not naming the Apple vendor. It would also cater to the domestic market and expand operations to include tablets and laptops, the newspaper reported. Samsung Electronics Co and Apple’s assembly partners are among 22 companies that have pledged 110 billion