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Private Sector: Pay

Volume 488: debated on Monday 2 March 2009

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what the mean wage of a full-time (a) private and (b) public sector worker was in each year since 1996-97. (258618)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK statistics authority. I have asked the authority to reply.

Letter from Dennis Roberts:

The National Statistician has been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question asking what the mean wage of a full-time worker in (a) the private sector and (b) the public sector was in each year since 1996-97. (258618). I am replying in her absence.

Levels of earnings are estimated from the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE), and are provided for all full-time employees on adult rates of pay, whose pay for the survey period was not affected by absence. The ASHE, carried out in April each year, is the most comprehensive source of earnings information in the United Kingdom.

I attach a table showing the mean gross weekly earnings for all full-time employees in the private and public sector from 1997 to 2008.

Mean weekly pay—gross—for full-time employee jobs1, United Kingdom 1997 to 2008

£

Public full-time employees

Private full-time employees

1997

373

373

1998

385

392

1999

403

410

2000

415

426

2001

438

455

2002

458

479

2003

478

492

20042

500

511

20043

503

498

2005

531

513

20064

543

534

2007

557

550

2008

582

574

1 Full-time employees on adult rates whose pay for the survey pay-period was not affected by absence. 2 2004 results excluding supplementary survey for comparison with 2003. 3 2004 results including supplementary surveys designed to improve coverage of the survey (for more information see National Statistics website www.statistics.gov.uk). 4 2006 results with methodology consistent with 2007. Source: Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings, Office for National Statistics.