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27 GRAPH 4 - Indices for prices and earnings indices between 2004 and 2010


(2004=100) 250


Composite Consumer Price Index Median employment earnings GDP per capita Income 200


Prices must be considered alongside changes to earnings. There are two easily available indicators: median employment earnings and Gross Domestic Product per capita. Neither measure alone is ideal for this purpose but both provide a reasonable indication of how employment earnings and, more generally, people’s incomes are changing.


GRAPH 4 150 100 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010


This graph shows that both median employment earnings and GDP per capita have risen much faster than in ation. Between 2004 and 2010, prices went up by 31 percent, median earnings rose by almost 75 percent and per capita GDP more then doubled. These  gures mean that median labour earnings and average income rose, in real terms, by one third and three quarters. These are outstanding values, by any standard.


GRAPH 5


GRAPH 5 - Median employment earnings growth for selected sectors between 2004 and 2010


(%)


120 100 80 60 40 20 0


Sector Overall earnings Composite Consumer Price Index


If we look into the evolution of earnings by economic sector it is clear all sectors saw earnings growth above the rate of in ation, with the notable – and somewhat shocking –exception of workers in health, social welfare and domestic sectors. Real earnings increased almost across the board, with the greatest increases in manufacturing and construction. So, the domestic sector aside, the major bene ciaries of income growth, in relative terms, appear to have been sectors that most employ the least quali ed workers.


GRAPH 6


Looking at earnings growth by occupation, a similar pattern emerges. Every category has, on average, bene ted from a real increase in earnings. What these  gures tell us is that people have enjoyed real income rises that are, in some cases, very signi cant. In other words, never before have so many been so wealthy.


GRAPH 6 - Median employment earnings growth by occupation between 2004 and 2010


(%)


100 90 80 70


50 60


40


20 10 30


0 Occupation Overall median employment earnings Composite Consumer Price Index


If that is truly the case, the  gures raise interesting questions and pose complex challenges to government policy in labour, social bene ts and housing.


JULY 2011


Manufacturing Construction Real estate, renting and business activities Recreational and gaming Trade Hotels and restaurants Finance Education


Transport, storage and communications Public administration


Utilities


Domestic workers Health and social welfare


Craftsmen Senior offi cials and managers Clerks Semi-skilled Technicians Skilled Services and sales workers Professionals Unskilled


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