Average weekly earnings fall


Average weekly earnings fell by 1.6 per cent in the 12 months to the end of June, according to new figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO).

The data indicates that earnings in public sector fell by 4.4 per cent compared with a decline of 0.7 per cent in the private sector.

Overall, average weekly earnings fell to €690.48 in the end of the second quarter compared to €701.73 a year earlier.

This compares with a revised estimated decrease in weekly earnings of 3.7 per cent for the 12 months ending March 31st.

The largest decline in wages was in the education sector, where earnings fell 8.3 per cent. Earnings in transport and storage fell 7.3 per cent.

The fall in public sector pay rates was attributed to decreases announced in last December's budget.

According to CSO, the greatest decreases in weekly earnings up to the end of 2009 were recorded in businesses employing less that 50 staff. However, in the first half of this year, weekly earnings have fallen in companies of all sizes.

The statistics show that average weekly paid hours fell to 31.7 in the second quarter of 2010, a decline of 0.2 hours or 0.6 per cent over the year. This represents the lowest annual decrease in paid hours since the first quarter of 2009.

In the private sector, average weekly paid horus fell by 0.6 per cent over the year to the end of June from 32 hours to 31.8 hours. A marginal decrease of 0.3 per cent was recorded in paid hours in the public sector.

Average hourly earnings fell from €22.02 per hour in the second quarter of last year to €21.79 for the same quarter in 2010. The largest decreases in hourly earnings were recorded in the public administration and defence and health and social work sectors.

In the private sector, hourly earnings were unchanged over the 12 months to the end of June at €19.32. During the same period, public sector hourly earnings fell by 4.2 per cent from €30.07 to €28.81.

The number of employees declined by 3.6 per cent over the year to June 2010 with public sector employment decreasing 2.7 per cent while private sector employment fell 3.7 per cent.