Swiss wages expected to rise at fastest rate for 22 years

Swiss wages expected to rise at fastest rate for 22 years

A new study by ETH Zurich has revealed that wages in Switzerland will rise by an average of 2,2 percent next year. While this amounts to the fastest rise in Swiss salaries for 22 years, the university noted that it will not fully offset inflation.

Average Swiss salary to rise by more than 2 percent

The report, given to NZZ am Sonntag by the KOF Economic Research Centre in Zurich, found that average salary increases in Switzerland will amount to 2,2 percent in 2023. The last time wages rose so quickly was in 2001. Workers in high-demand areas, such as hotels and catering, will see their wages rise by up to 4,4 percent in the next year, while those in jobs with fewer worker shortages, like in Swiss banks, insurance and finance, will only see wages go up by 1,5 percent.

However, despite the large rise in salaries, Le Matin noted that it will still result in a loss of purchasing power for employees, with UBS predicting that inflation will be around 3,1 percent by the end of this year. Swiss families have already lost 250 Swiss francs a month to the rising cost of living due to price hikes on fuel, energy and other goods, according to data from the Swiss Trade Union Federation (SGB).

Wage rises in Switzerland will not keep up with inflation

Recently, the president of the SGB, Pierre-Yves Maillard, called on international companies and domestic businesses in Switzerland to raise wages by 5 percent in the next year. If this did not happen, he warned that there would be “political and social unrest” across the country, noting that even full-time employees will struggle to cope with price rises.

In response to the call for higher wages, the president of the Swiss Employers’ Union, Valentin Vogt, predicted that "there will certainly not be a wage freeze in 2023, but there will not be astronomical increases either." Speaking to NZZ am Sonntag, he explained that many businesses had spent most of their financial reserves coping with the COVID pandemic, and with energy shortages and blackouts on the horizon, many companies will be reluctant to announce salary increases before the disruption hits.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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