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Latest publication: Quarterly local government finances 2019, 2nd quarter

Published: 31 August 2018

Operating expenses of municipalities in Mainland Finland grew by 2.2 per cent in January to June 2018

In January to June 2018, the external operating expenses of municipalities in Mainland Finland were 2.2 per cent higher than in the corresponding period of the previous year. External operating revenue declined by 1.2 per cent. Municipalities’ tax revenue totalled EUR 11.6 billion and central government transfers to local government EUR 4.4 billion. The external operating expenses of joint municipal authorities grew by 6.2 per cent and operating revenue by 4.3 per cent. These data appear from Statistics Finland's statistics on quarterly local government finances, for which data were collected from 80 municipalities and 70 joint municipal authorities in Mainland Finland.

External quarterly data on the finances of municipalities and joint municipal authorities, EUR million 1)

  2nd quarter
Municipalities Joint municipal authorities
2018 Change, % 2018 Change, %
Operating revenue total 3 366 -1,2 7 489 4,3
Operating expenses total 18 176 2,2 7 084 6,2
Annual contribution margin 1 624 -10,4 374 -21,6
Loan stock 15 899 2,0 3 681 15,1
1) Operating expenses include expenses from production for own use. The change is calculated compared with the corresponding period in the previous year.

Finances of municipalities and joint municipal authorities

The operating expenses of municipalities in Mainland Finland without internal items amounted to EUR 18.2 billion in the first half of 2018. The growth amounted to 2.2 per cent compared with January to June of the previous year. External operating income amounted to EUR 3.4 billion. Operating income decreased by 1.2 per cent.

Municipalities received a total of EUR 11.6 billion in tax revenue and EUR 4.4 billion in central government transfers to local government in January to June 2018. Tax revenue increased by 2.5 per cent from the corresponding period of the year before, while central government transfers decreased by 0.6 per cent. Tax funding formed of these items was EUR 2,926 per capita in Mainland Finland. 1) The combined annual contribution margin of municipalities was EUR 1.6 billion. The annual contribution margin weakened by 10.4 per cent year-on-year.

During the second quarter, the loan stock of municipalities in Mainland Finland grew by 0.3 per cent amounting to EUR 15.9 billion at the end of June. Calculated per inhabitant, the loan stock was EUR 2,899. 2) Investment expenses were 11.4 per cent higher than in January to June of the previous year, amounting to EUR 1.2 billion.

The external operating expenses of joint municipal authorities in Mainland Finland totalled EUR 7.1 billion in January to June 2018. The growth from the corresponding period in the previous year amounted to 6.2 per cent. External operating revenue amounted to EUR 7.5 billion, and increased by 4.3 per cent. The annual contribution margin of joint municipal authorities weakened by 21.6 per cent from the year before and was EUR 0.4 billion.

In the first half of 2018, joint municipal authorities’ investment expenses totalled EUR 0.5 billion. They grew by 19.5 per cent from the corresponding period in the previous year. The loan stock grew by 6.3 per cent from the end of the first quarter of 2018 and stood at EUR 3.7 billion at the end of June.

Information on the statistics

The statistics on quarterly local government finances are in the first to third quarters a sample survey that describes the development of the finances of municipalities and joint municipal authorities in Mainland Finland by quarter. For the statistical release on the fourth quarter, data are collected from all municipalities and joint municipal authorities in Mainland Finland. The data in the statistics on quarterly local government finances are preliminary and they might become revised in coming publications.

No data are released by municipality or joint municipal authority for the 1st, 2nd and 3rd quarters that are based on a sample survey. The financial statement estimate data received from municipalities and joint municipal authorities in the data collection concerning the fourth quarter will be released at unit level starting from data concerning 2017 on Statistics Finland's website in the database Data on finances reported by municipalities and joint municipal authorities .

The data published in the statistics on quarterly local government finances are not directly comparable with the data of the statistics on local government finances by quarter because of the different way of handling local government enterprises. In the statistics on quarterly local government finances, local government enterprises are combined with the data on basic municipalities and joint municipal authorities, while this was not done in the statistics on local government finances by quarter published between 2013 and 2015.


1) The population data used were the population of Mainland Finland on 31 December 2017.
2) The population data used were the population of Mainland Finland on 31 December 2017.

Source: Quarterly local government finances, 2nd quarter 2018, Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Jens Melfsen 029 551 2578, Karen Asplund 029 551 3611, kuntatalous@stat.fi

Director in charge: Ville Vertanen

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Updated 31.08.2018

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Quarterly local government finances [e-publication].
ISSN=2343-4139. 2nd quarter 2018. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 22.10.2019].
Access method: http://www.stat.fi/til/ktan/2018/02/ktan_2018_02_2018-08-31_tie_001_en.html