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22 December 2008

Pay levels now outstripping inflation

Despite falling inflation, negotiated pay increases have remained steady and have in fact risen slightly on last month's headline figure. The median (mid-point) pay settlement levels recorded by Labour Research Department's Payline database rose to 3.9% in the three months to November, a rise of 0.1%. The November Retail Prices Index (RPI) inflation figure was 3.0%. In October the pay settlement level was 3.8% and the RPI was 4.2%.

The three-month pay settlement levels have remained fairly stable throughout the year, despite a small dip last month, while inflation started the year at 4.1%, rose to 5% in July and September, before falling back to its current level.

The Payline figures show a clear difference between the private sector, where the three-month median increase is 4.2%, and the public sector, where it is only 3.0%. There is little difference between manufacturing settlements - a 3.9% increase - and the service sector - 4.0%.

The latest pay figures are published in the December 2008 issue of Workplace Report. The Payline database records details of pay settlements and agreements on terms and conditions negotiated by unions, and holds more than 2000 agreements in total for the whole of the UK economy.

Notes for editors:

For further information about Payline contact Lewis Emery. For further information about Workplace Report contact Rebecca Johnson (Workplace Report editor).

  • The full article appears in the December 2008 issue of Workplace Report, Workplace Report is LRD's monthly publication for union reps and negotiators.
  • Labour Research Department is an independent organisation founded in 1912 to produce research on behalf of trade unions and the labour movement. More than 1,800 trade union organisations, including 55 national unions, are affiliated to it, representing more than 99% of TUC membership. LRD press releases are also available on the website at www.lrd.org.uk
  • Pay settlements are negotiated rises on basic pay, and exclude bonus, increment, overtime and other allowances.


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