Remuneration of EU staff and related surveys – New York and Washington, District of Columbia
The procedure of adjusting salaries in the EU-duty stations hinges on correction coefficients (CCs), which are estimated based on purchasing power parities (PPPs) and nominal exchange rates. The coefficients and the adjustment procedure ensure that purchasing power of salaries in various duty stations does not vary irrespective of the place of employment. On top of that, other international organizations and public institutions use the EU CC.
In addition to intra-EU estimates, since 1989 Eurostat has been involved in calculating CCs for extra-EU US duty stations. This work is conducted in accordance with the methodology used for intra-EU stations and is adopted by the Article 64&65 Working Group of statistical experts.
Currently, two surveys using the European Comparison Program (ECP) methodology are required in New York City and Washington DC. The CCs in New York City use the underlying data from 2009 extrapolated with the regional Consumer Price Index (CPI). In Washington DC, CCs are based on data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to OECD, which differ in terms of the methodology and information source from the ECP surveys. For this reason, there is a risk that information used for both New York City and Washington DC already lacks precision and comparability.
The estimation of CCs due to its wide and important use, as well as challenges resulting from differences in the consumption goods market in the EU and US, require the approach that ensures high precision of the estimates. The elements of this approach – methodology, work plan and resources allocation – are presented in detail in the following sections.
The objectives of the study are to conduct an ECP-type survey of prices in Washington, DC and New York City metropolitan areas, validate the price data, and evaluate the quality of gathered data. The goal is also to allow correct identification of the average price level in the duty station for comparison with the correct identification of the average price level in Brussels. The phases of the survey include preparation, fieldwork, validation and reporting, including explanations and analysis.
Project Leader: CASE
Partner: ODW Consulting