TOKYO, June 30 (Xinhua) -- Japanese lawmakers' average income dropped 8.7 percent in 2019 from a year earlier to 24.27 million yen (225,000 U.S. dollars), marking the first decline in four years, government data showed Tuesday.
According to the figures released by parliament, of 653 lawmakers, upper house member from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), Taichiro Motoe, netted the most in the recording period at 778.93 million yen (7.2 million U.S. dollars), with the total inflated by sales of stocks.
In second place was veteran lower house member Ichiro Aisawa, who earned 111.70 million yen (1.03 million U.S. dollars), 60.65 million yen (593,000 U.S. dollars) of which was attributable to rental income from a property in an expensive district in Tokyo.
The third spot was taken by LDP upper house member Kenji Nakanishi who earned 107.97 million yen (1 million U.S. dollars), including 88.27 million yen (819,000 U.S. dollars) in dividends from JP Morgan Securities Japan Co. where he used to be an executive.
The annual income of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is also head of the ruling LDP, totaled the highest among party leaders for a second straight year at 38.68 million yen (359,000 U.S. dollars), comprising mainly salary and annual allowance, the figures showed, although this was 1.6 million yen (14,800 U.S. dollars) less than in 2018.
The top 20 earners on the list of lawmakers in the recording period comprised 17 ruling LDP members, according to the latest data released by parliament.
Ruling LDP lawmakers' income in the recording period was the highest among all parties at an average of 26.08 million yen (242,000 U.S. dollars), followed by the main opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan at an average of 22.09 million yen (205,000 U.S. dollars), the data showed.
The third highest earning lawmakers belonged to the Democratic Party for the People, who earned, on average, 22.04 million yen (204,600 U.S. dollars) in 2019, according to the figures.
Overall, lawmakers' average income, while retreating for 2019, surged to a 16-year high for 2018 at 26.57 million yen (246,600 U.S. dollars), with the amount pushed up by one lawmaker's earnings totaling 1.7 billion yen (15.78 million U.S. dollars) after profits from selling unlisted stocks were included.