THE 10 years between 2010 and 2020 are set to be the worst decade for pay growth for almost a century, according to new analysis released yesterday.
Labour’s shadow work and pensions secretary Owen Smith accused the government of “failing to make work pay,” adding that “workers are being served a raw deal under the Tories.”
Mr Smith said that the decade of low pay will see “workers’ pay packets squeezed to breaking point” and, despite Mr Osborne’s new minimum wage for over-25s, “the Tories will have overseen the slowest pay growth in a century and the third slowest since the 1860s.”
Figures from the House of Commons library forecast that wages will grow in real terms by just 6.2 per cent compared to 12.7 per cent in the previous decade.
The figures show that wages increased the most during the 1970s and ’80s, by 36.6 per cent and 39.9 per cent respectively, but the increases have been smaller from the 1990s onwards.
The lowest real terms increases this century were 1.8 per cent between 1900 and 1910 and 1.5 per cent between 1920 and 1930.
Low wage growth comes on top of cuts to universal credit, which take effect later this year and mean that 2.6 million working families will be on average £1,600 a year worse off, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS).
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady warned in her New Year’s message that wages won’t recover for some years as workers brace themselves for “10 years of pay going backwards while everything else — transport, housing, bills — gets ever more expensive and debt piles up.”