Macroeconomic perspective

In order to observe the overall income situation of all households in Switzerland, figures are used from the Swiss National Accounts (NA). From a macroeconomic point of view these figures provide an overview of the level, composition and trends of the incomes received by all households in Switzerland. However, they do not reveal the distribution of incomes among individual households (microeconomic perspective). Such information can be provided by the Household Budget Survey (HBS) and the Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (SILC) as well as the analyses based on these statistics. Due to diverging definitions, a direct comparison of the figures presented here with the results from the HBS and SILC is not possible.

Total income

Total income rose by 64.5% in the period from 1995 to 2018. Once population growth and the development of prices have been taken into account, growth in inflation-adjusted total income per capita in this period was only 22.2%.

Income components

The shares of total income from each of the main components evolved in different directions between 1995 and 2018. Income from employment is the main income component, representing approximately two-thirds of total income. During the period under observation, the share of income from employment was quite stable. The share of property income experienced a downward trend. The share of transfer income, on the other hand, rose from 21% in 1995 to 24% in 2018.

Property income

The importance of the individual components of property income altered considerably in the period from 1995 to 2018. Whereas the share of property income accounted for by interest fell by almost three quarters, the share of distributed income of corporations more than doubled. The share of other investment income was the only one to stay within a range of 41% to 54% and in 2018 was almost equal to the share of 1995.

Transfer income

Due to the change in classification of health insurance benefits after health insurance became compulsory in 1996, the diagram starts from 1996. In the composition of transfer income, the increase in the share of other social insurance benefits and as well of social assistance benefits in cash between 1996 and 2018 was noticeable, whereas the shares of the other components of transfer income declined.

Further information





Federal Statistical Office Section Social Analyses
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