Average earnings increase after three years of decline

Irish workers earned an average of €36,079 in 2012, with the information and communications sector coming out on top


Average earnings rose slightly in 2012 after three consecutive years of decline, new figures from the Central Statistics Office show.

Irish workers earned an average of €36,079 last year, an increase of 0.5 per cent, or €174, on the 2011 figure.

The accommodation and food services sector saw the biggest fall, with earnings dropping 3.5 per cent in the period. The sector also had the lowest annual wage at €16,319.

Workers in the construction industry have suffered most over a three-year period, with annual earnings falling 9.1 per cent since 2009 to €35,493.

The largest increase last year was recorded in professional, scientific and technical activities, where average annual earnings were up 5.2 per cent to €41,972.

Workers in the information and communications field had the highest average earnings of any sector at €52,035, up 7.8 per cent since 2009.

Those involved in financial services, insurance and real estate followed close behind, with average earnings of €51,389, an increase of 4.2 per cent in the last three years.

The total wage bill excluding costs in the Republic last year was €55.3 billion, up from €54.9 billion in 2011. In the three years to 2012, total annual earnings have fallen by 6.7 per cent, or €4 billion, however.

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