Pay in manufacturing
Factory workers have made up some lost ground against inflation in their pay this year, official figures show. However, they lost ground to other sectors of the economy.
The latest Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings, which covers earnings to April 2015, show that the weekly average earnings, excluding overtime of “all employees”, that is full-time, part-time, male or female, in manufacturing rose by 2.3% (median or midpoint figure).
Set against the rise in inflation under the Retail Prices Index (RPI) of 0.9% in the year to April that means an increase in real terms. However the rise for manufacturing workers was only 0.2% in 2014, according to ASHE, when RPI inflation was rising at 2.5%.
As the rise for all employees in all sectors of the economy for 2015 was 2.5%, factory workers lost ground overall this year, after their pay rise of 0.2% matched rise for all sectors of the economy in 2014.
The ASHE figures for the median gross weekly earnings, excluding overtime, of full-time workers in manufacturing give a sum of £507.60 — a 1.9% rise on the 2014 figure of £498.30
For men, the median weekly earnings figure, excluding overtime was £524.90 — a 1.9% rise on the £514.90 a week for the year before.
Women’s earnings on a comparable basis were only £410.50 a week, but that was a 3.3% rise on the £397.30 in 2014.
As women’s gross full-time earnings rose more quickly, the gender pay gap for full-time workers narrowed to 21.8% from 22.8%, but it's still far too wide. The Ford Dagenham women machinists, who struck over equal pay almost half a century ago in 1968, would be dismayed.
The figures in the table give a breakdown of weekly earnings, excluding overtime, for men and women in the various manufacturing sub sectors. Where comparable figure were not available over the two years the subsector has been excluded.
Pay in manufacturing 2014-15 (£ a week)1
|2015||% rise 2014-15||2014||% rise 2013-14|
|Wood and straw||£413||3.6%||£398||-0.4%|
|Rubber and plastic||£456||1.7%||£449||0.1%|
|Other non-metallic prods||£526||0.9%||£521||1.4%|
|Fabricated metal products||£479||5.4%||£455||-0.9%|
|Computer, electronics, optics||£641||2.7%||£624||-0.5%|
|Motor vehicles etc||£604||3.1%||£586||2.6%|
|Other transport equipment||£676||1.0%||£670||2.2%|
|Wood and straw||£401||8.0%||£371||1.6%|
|Rubber and plastic||£381||6.7%||£357||3.0%|
|Other non-metallic prods||£411||10.9%||£370||-0.1%|
|Fabricated metal products||£383||0.0%||£383||3.6%|
|Computers, electronics, optics||£438||6.5%||£411||1.2%|
|Motor vehicles etc||£447||-6.0%||£476||-4.1%|
|Other transport equipment||£576||1.2%||£569||7.7%|
1 Full-time weekly earnings, excluding overtime, for employees not affected by absence; pay figures rounded to nearest £ but percentage increases as per ASHE.