Spain: Basic Food Spending to Minimum Wage Ratio, by year
YearBasic food spending to minimum wage ratio,
in %
Jan 202413.1
Jan 202311.9
Jan 202211.8
Jan 202112.0
  • Region: Spain
  • Time period: Jan 2021 to Jan 2024
  • Published: Jan 2024

Data Analysis and Insights

Updated: Apr 15, 2024 | Published by: Statistico | About Us / Data / Analysis

Trend in Basic Food Spending to Minimum Wage Ratio

Between January 2021 and January 2024, the ratio of basic food spending to minimum wage in Spain has shown a fluctuating trend. In January 2021, the ratio stood at 12.0%, indicating that basic food spending constituted 12.0% of the minimum wage. The ratio experienced a slight decrease to 11.8% by January 2022, suggesting a momentary relief for wage earners. However, this trend reversed as the ratio increased to 11.9% in January 2023 and further to 13.1% in January 2024, marking the highest ratio recorded in the provided data. The increase from 2023 to 2024 signifies a growing financial burden on minimum wage earners in Spain regarding their basic food expenses.

Year-on-Year Changes in the Ratio

Analyzing year-on-year changes highlights significant shifts in the economic burden on minimum wage earners in Spain. The ratio experienced a slight decrease of 0.2 percentage points from January 2021 (12.0%) to January 2022 (11.8%), followed by a minor increase of 0.1 percentage points by January 2023 (11.9%). A more pronounced increase occurred from January 2023 to January 2024, where the ratio surged by 1.2 percentage points to reach 13.1%. This latest increase indicates a significant rise in the cost of basic food relative to minimum wage, highlighting the escalating challenge faced by wage earners in managing their food expenses.

Comparison of Ratio in 2021 and 2024

Comparing the ratio at the start and end of the provided dataset reveals a noticeable increase in the financial strain on minimum wage earners in Spain concerning their basic food costs. In January 2021, the basic food spending to minimum wage ratio was 12.0%, which rose to 13.1% by January 2024. This increment of 1.1 percentage points over three years underscores a worsening economic situation for individuals on minimum wage, as a larger portion of their income is now required to cover basic food expenses.

Insight into the Stability of Minimum Wage Versus Food Price Inflation

The data suggests that the minimum wage in Spain has not kept pace with the increase in basic food prices, leading to a higher ratio of basic food spending to minimum wage over time. The initial decrease from 12.0% in January 2021 to 11.8% in January 2022 might have indicated a temporary improvement or stability in the purchasing power of minimum wage earners. However, the subsequent increases, especially the significant jump to 13.1% by January 2024, reflect a failure to adequately adjust the minimum wage in response to rising food prices, impacting the affordability of basic necessities for the population earning the minimum wage.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the significance of the increased ratio of basic food spending to minimum wage in Spain?

The increase to 13.1% indicates a growing financial burden on minimum wage earners due to higher basic food expenses.

What does the data suggest about the stability of minimum wage versus food price inflation in Spain?

The data suggests the minimum wage has not kept pace with increasing food prices, resulting in a higher basic food spending to minimum wage ratio, particularly the significant jump to 13.1% by January 2024.

Terms and Definitions

Basic food spending refers to the amount of money a household, or an individual, spends on fundamental food items necessary for survival and basic nutrition within a specified period. These items traditionally include cereals, fruits, vegetables, dairy, protein (meat, fish, poultry), and certain fats.

Minimum wage is the lowest remuneration that employers can legally pay their workers for their services during a given period, which can be an hour, day, or month. The minimum wage is established by labour laws and is typically set to cover basic living costs.

Consumer Price Index is a statistical measure that estimates the average price of consumer goods and services purchased by households. The CPI is a useful indicator of changes in costs of living and inflation. It can impact both basic food spending and minimum wage policy.

The cost of living refers to the amount of money an individual or household needs to maintain a certain standard of living, including basic expenses such as housing, food, taxes, and healthcare. A high cost of living often impacts the affordability of basic food items and can demand increases in the minimum wage.

Inflation is the rate at which the general level of prices for goods and services is rising and subsequently, purchasing power is falling. Over time, as the cost of goods and services increases, each unit of currency buys fewer goods and services. It directly affects the cost of a basic food basket.

The real wage refers to the wage rate of an individual after adjustment for inflation, reflecting the actual purchasing power of the wage in terms of the amount of goods and services it can buy. The relation between real wage and minimum wage impacts how much individuals can spend on food.

Food insecurity refers to the lack of consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy life. It is often a consequence of not having the money to buy food or lack of resources to get food. This term could be relevant if the basic food spending to minimum wage ratio affects the ability to afford enough food.
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