Workplace Report February 2021

Pay and prices

New factors affect earnings growth

Official figures for average weekly earnings in November for regular pay (excluding bonuses) in the whole economy rose by a healthy 4.2% from 3.5% the month before. However, this growth is increasingly being driven by a fall in the number and proportion of lower-paid employee jobs during the coronavirus pandemic; it is estimated that underlying wage growth – if the effect of this change in profile of jobs is removed – is likely to be under 2%.

LRD Payline data on agreed deals is for December. It shows an across the board median increase at 2.5% but this is still based on very thin data. The biggest growth has largely been in public sector pay and services.