Belfast Telegraph

Home News UK

New jobs 'in low paid industries'

Four in five new jobs are in industries where the average wage is less than £8 an hour, according to researchers.

Some 79% of the 587,000 net rise in jobs since June 2010 has come in low-paid industries such as retail and residential care, said the TUC.

Low-paid industries are defined as those where the average hourly wage is £7.95 or lower. In high-paid industries, the average hourly wage is £17.40 or higher.

The union umbrella group's report The UK's Low Pay Recovery, which analyses official figures, finds that retail has made the biggest contribution to rising employment levels, with the number of jobs in this sector increasing by 234,000.

The average wage in retail is just £7.35 an hour, the TUC says, while residential care, where the average wage is £7.78 per hour, makes the second biggest contribution of 155,000 jobs.

Just over one in five (23%) of new jobs created since June 2010 have been in the highly paid computer programming, consultancy and related services industry, where the average hourly wage is £18.40. The workforce in this sector has grown by 131,000.

In middle-paid industries, which account for nearly three-quarters of the UK workforce and where the average wage is between £7.95 and £17.40 per hour, there has been no net job creation since June 2010.

While some industries, such as legal and accounting, have created jobs (135,000), others such as public administration (-160,000) and social work (-68,000) have shed them.

The TUC said it was concerned that the overwhelming majority of new jobs have been created in low-paid sectors, with many workers having to take a big drop in their salaries and stall their careers in order to stay in work.

General Secretary Frances O'Grady said: "The Government frequently boasts about record levels of employment, even though people's job chances have fallen in recent months. But what's more concerning is that four in five new jobs are in industries where the average wage is less than £8 an hour."


From Belfast Telegraph