The Ministry has noticed an improvement in the situation with a salary of Russians

Real wages in Russia in January 2016 has grown to the previous month for the first time since the middle of last year, follows from the monitoring of the current situation in the economy from the Ministry of economic development (MED). According to experts of the Ministry, after the exclusion of seasonal and calendar factors real wages increased in comparison with December 2015 by 0.3%.

In annual terms, real wages in Russia continues to decline — it fell by a further 6.1%. For comparison, in January 2015 the fall was 8.4%, in October — just 10.5 per cent, in December — again to 8.4%. The decline rates of the real wage in the MAYOR considered a good sign.

“This is the smallest reduction in real wages since December 2014, and taking into account data for December of 2015 could be a sign of a gradual reversal of the downward salary trend developed during 2015,” reads the Ministry report.

Earlier, the head of the Ministry of labour and social protection Maxim Topilin has predicted that in 2016, Russians ‘ real wages will decline by only 3-4%, i.e. approximately at the level of the crisis year of 2009. For comparison, in 2015, Russians ‘ real wages collapsed by 9.3%. The Deputy head of the Ministry of labor Lyubov Eltsova predicted that the level of 2014, real wages will return only in 2018.

A slight improvement of real wages has not led to positive developments in the field of real incomes of Russians. “Real disposable income continued to decline rapidly, comparable to the end of last year. In January, the decline in real income was more than the actual salary and amounted to 6.3% in January of 2015],” reads the one in July.

The document notes that the fall in real incomes of Russians resumed and on a monthly basis. If in December 2015, the MAYOR recorded after removing seasonal and calendar factors increase (by 1.9% in comparison with November), in January 2016, the real incomes of Russians decreased in comparison with December by 1.2%.

The reduction of real incomes of Russians continues to put pressure on suffering from compression of a consumer demand industry and trade. In particular, continues to deepen the decline of car production in January 2016, it has declined at an annual rate of 40.4%. Consumers to switch to cheaper products led to a drop in the production of sausages (-8,8% compared with January-2015), cream (-5,7%) and vegetable (-2,1%) butter, cheese (-0,9%) and light industry products, including knitwear (-12,4%) and footwear (-11,7%).

Retail trade turnover in January fell at an annual rate of 7.3%, including food products, beverages and tobacco — 6.3%, for nonfood products — by 8.2%. At the same time, the MAYOR noted that the rate of decline in turnover slowed down and are the lowest since March 2015. For comparison, in December 2015, the decline in turnover was twice stronger (-15,3%).

Slowed down and the overall rate of decline of the Russian economy. According to the MAYOR, in January of 2016, the country’s GDP compared to the same month of the previous year decreased by 2.5% compared with 3.5% in December. In monthly terms, Russia’s GDP in January after removal of the seasonal factor decreased by 0.1%, while the index of industrial production increased by 0.3%. However, in the MAYOR attribute this increase mainly to rising demand for electricity and heat in lower temperatures.

“Because of the somewhat lower than usual January temperatures significantly increased the production of electricity and especially heat. In fact, this segment contributed to the achievement of the overall industrial production index positive values for the month”, — is emphasized in the monitoring.

Previously the same effect was noted by the experts of the Center of development of the Higher school of Economics, who had warned that by the end of February, appeared a little warmer than usual, in the infrastructure sector may occur a sharp decline, which “would drag down the entire index of industrial production.

Experts also stressed that the January decline in production (in the basic industries after excluding the seasonal factor, they decreased over the month by 0.4%) increases the chances of a General deepening of the economic recession in 2016.

“Taken together, the current dynamics of macroeconomic indicators indicates that the spiral of recession in the Russian economy continues to twist”, — stated in the document of Economics CR.