People in paid work had an average of 2.5% more to spend last year, national statistics agency CBS said on Tuesday. This means a family with disposable income of some €44,000 a year had €1,100 more to spend.
Even though consumer prices rose by 2.6%, the highest level since 2002, spending power for the population as a whole grew by an average of 1.3%, the CBS said. Pensioners too had more disposable cash after a two year decline.
In total, 62% of the population had more to spend in 2019, which is also an increase on 2018, when 54% of people had an increase in spending power.
The 2019 rise is largely due to collective pay rises, which averaged 2.5% over the year. Tax changes, including a small cut in income tax, also played part, the CBS said.