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Norway leads in purchasing power growth

Consumers in the major European countries and the United States can expect to have less money to spend this year. Norway bucks the trend; the average Norwegian’s wallet will grow.
Unlike most of our neighbours, Norwegians will have more to spend this year.

Consumers in the major European countries and the United States can expect to have less money to spend this year. Norway bucks the trend; the average Norwegian’s wallet will grow.
Unlike most of our neighbours, Norwegians will have more to spend this year.
 
No other rich country is likely to see as large a growth in consumer spending this year as Norway.
 
For the Euro-zone, the OECD predicts lower growth in wages than in prices, thereby reducing purchasing power.
 
Spain, Germany and France come out badly, with a decline of 0.6 percent from 2007 to 2008.
 
Private sector wages in Japan and the United States are also going to fall behind the rise in prices, if OECD estimates prove correct.
 
Norwegian consumers however, are experiencing the highest growth in expendable income in any of the richer countries this year. The OECD predicts 2.6 percent higher purchasing power among Norwegian consumers. Only Finland comes close to equalling this, with 2.2 percent.
 
While Norway's heavily regulated agricultural sector has some of the highest food costs in the world, it has nevertheless protected Norwegian consumers from much of the inflation in food prices that has been experienced in other countries.
 
Since 2000, Norwegian wage earners have seen their purchasing power grow by 29.9 percent.
 
The contrast with Germany is striking. There, very low wage increases have resulted in a net reduction in purchasing power of 6 percent in the same period. Italy has experienced a smaller reduction in this period. Great Britain on the other hand has seen purchasing power grow by 19.3 percent since 2000. However predictions suggest that the British may be in for a steep economic down-turn.
 
In Norway, economists predict lower growth but a soft landing as the economy returns to normal.