Blog & Articles

Turning the corner: understanding this week’s wage data

Date: 14. April 2014
Matthew Whittaker

After nearly six years in which wage growth has been consistently outstripped by inflation, expectation is building that this week will mark an official end to the pay squeeze. When the February 2014 data is released later this week, inflation is expected to fall further below its 2 per cent target while nominal wage growth continues its gradual improvement, meaning the two lines may finally cross over.

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What’s really been happening to living standards?

Date: 7. April 2014
Gavin Kelly

Despite the fact that it’s been centre-stage for a number of years, there is still a lot of confusion about the squeeze on household incomes: who has really been hit 

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Pay set is to go up, or down, or stay the same – it all depends on how you measure it

Date: 3. April 2014
Gavin Kelly and Matthew Whittaker

We can expect to hear an awful lot about the closing gap between pay and inflation over the next few months as, inevitably and thankfully, on some measure we close in on a “cross-over point” where wages overtake price rises.  

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We should reform zero-hours contracts, not ban them

Date: 25. March 2014
Vidhya Alakeson

Anyone who has been employed on a zero-hours contract for at least a year and works a relatively consistent pattern of hours should have the right to a fixed-hours contract, if they choose. Under these circumstances

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Will the welfare cap stand the test of time?

Date: 25. March 2014
Gavin Kelly

George Osborne's welfare cap will be voted on tomorrow. It's viewed by many as a moment of reckoning for Labour in which it will be caught in a deadly trap:

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A budget for the ‘makers, doers and savers’

Date: 20. March 2014
Matthew Whittaker

The theme of economic optimism that built during 2013 spilled over into today’s Budget—but only just. GDP is projected to rise more quickly over the next four years than was the case back in the autumn, and employment continues to out-perform expectations.

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The Budget contains little to excite those on middle incomes

Date: 19. March 2014
Matthew Whittaker

Despite the talk of letting people keep more of what they earn and what they save, today's budget contained little to excite those on low to middle incomes. 

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Mind the Budget income gap

Date: 19. March 2014
Vidhya Alakeson

The Budget was a mixed bag for low and middle-income earners. Some of the measures on childcare and taxation are welcome, but still tend to benefit the better-off most.

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More than a minimum: reforming the minimum wage

Date: 13. March 2014
Conor D'Arcy

Today, the minimum wage has all but eliminated extreme low pay without damaging employment. But the cautious approach which helped the policy find its feet now looks too narrow, short-sighted and passive to dent the wider problem of low pay.

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