Household income up 3.7% in Q1

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Household income up 3.7% in Q1

Korea’s real household income increased sharply in the first quarter of 2018 from a year earlier, a government report showed Thursday.

An average household earned 4.76 million won ($4,415) per month in the January to March period, jumping 3.7 percent from a year earlier, according to the report by Statistics Korea.

The on-year growth is the quickest since the first quarter of 2014 when the comparable figure was 5 percent.

Inflation-adjusted real income also increased 2.4 percent in the first quarter over the one-year period, also marking the largest on-year gain since the first quarter of 2014, the data showed.

The latest findings showed households’ income earned through wages rose 6.1 percent on-year to an average of 3.2 million won over the three-month period, the largest gain since the 7.3 percent on-year rise seen in the fourth quarter of 2012, and transferred income, which includes state welfare support, climbed 19.2 percent to 590,000 won.

Profits generated by assets and earnings from business operations rose 3.4 percent and 5.7 percent, respectively, the figures showed.

The monthly average income of the bottom 20 percent income bracket, on the other hand, dropped 8 percent on-year to 1.28 million won. This is the sharpest drop since 2003, when such data began to be compiled.

In contrast, households in the upper 20 percent income range earned 10 million won during the first quarter of the year, up 9.3 percent from a year earlier.

Consequently, the country’s total distribution ratio for disposable income, a key barometer of earnings equality, reached 5.95 in the January-March period, up 0.6 from a year earlier.

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