|Key statistical concept|
The target variable for the quarterly indicator of total labour costs is compensation of employees compiled according to the SNA 93. Where this variable is not available a suitable proxy is sought, with the following general order of preference: gross wages and salaries; labour cost index multiplied by an appropriate total labour input measure (i.e. total hours worked or total employment / employees); average hourly / weekly / monthly earnings multiplied by an appropriate total labour input measure. Further details on where proxy variables have been used for particular countries and an evaluation of their quality can be found at: Quality evaluation of quarterly proxy variables for total labour costs.
In the interest of producing the longest possible time series for the quarterly indicators, current series are often linked to related historical time series provided to the OECD sometime in the past. The variables and their sources used for each country are noted in the country metadata under the heading ‘Sources'.
|Aggregation and consolidation|
Quarterly indicators of total labour costs for economic activities (i.e. sectors) G_K and C_K are compiled by either summing their respective activity components or as a weighted aggregation of proxy indices for the components.
The quarterly indicator of total labour costs for each economic activity is then benchmarked to the annual total labour costs time series to compile a temporally disaggregated quarterly time series of total labour costs in national currency, which is the series published.
The temporal disaggregation (benchmarking) methodology used is that of Fernández, see Fernández R.B. (1981), A methodological note on the estimation of time series, The Review of Economics and Statistics, 63: 471-478. This methodology is used via the software ‘ECOTRIM' designed by Eurostat.
The temporally disaggregated quarterly time series of total labour costs does not cover some aspects of labour costs such as the cost of employee training and recruitment and taxes on employment (e.g. payroll tax).
|All Higher Levels|
Main Economic Indicators