Nye Cominetti
Jobs
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Labour market
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Quality and security
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Low pay
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Pay
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Minimum wage

Is the minimum wage pushing people into self-employment?

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Two big changes in the labour market over the past two decades have been the rise in self-employment and the introduction and uprating of the minimum wage. Is there a connection between these trends? Legally, of course, there is no connection – the minimum wage applies to employees only. But economically, we would expect one. … Continued

Torsten Bell
Labour market
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Low pay
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Pay
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Minimum wage

Minimum Wage 20th anniversary special

Top of the Charts

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Afternoon all, It’s an historic day today. Lots of people were planning a party/wake. Big ones. But things have got derailed. No-one can agree on what to celebrate/mourn – or even when to celebrate/mourn it. There’s a serious danger no-one gets a party at all tonight. But don’t worry – TOTC is here to turn … Continued

Labour market
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Low pay
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Pay

Tackling the new frontiers of low pay

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Bad policies get the most attention. Whole books have been written on government interventions that achieved the exact opposite of what they intended, or eventually delivered at miles over budget. That’s why the UK’s minimum wage – effective, popular and cheap – is such a rare thing. The latest evidence confirms the minimum wage’s continued … Continued

Budgets & fiscal events
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Labour market
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Low pay
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Economy and public finances

The Autumn Budget 2017 brings worse than hoped for news for the low paid

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or many people, the big news out of November’s Budget – a massive downgrade in the outlook for productivity growth – will sound a bit abstract. The productivity downgrade has made the Chancellor’s task of balancing the books harder. But its impact on pay – with average annual earnings lowered by £1,000 – mean it’s even … Continued

Labour market
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Low pay
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Pay
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Minimum wage

The national living wage has caused the biggest fall in low pay in 40 years – but how is this improving people’s living standards?

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Employment is at a 40-year high, while pay is stagnating. That, in brief, sums up the last few years of changes in Britain’s labour market. As Figure 1 shows, politicians rightly highlight that employment and unemployment are undeniably trending in the right direction. But the good news on employment has failed drastically to translate into … Continued

Labour market
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Low pay
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Pay

The latest on low pay

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To paraphrase the great Yogi Berra, making predictions is hard. That’s especially true of the future of the UK’s labour market. After all, the current combination of record high employment and falling real wages is not a forecast many economists would’ve made even a couple of years ago. But new Annual Survey of Hours and … Continued

Torsten Bell
Jobs
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Labour market
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Productivity & industrial strategy
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Low pay

Morrisons matters: we need an industrial strategy for pay packets

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Like excessively floral play suits, industrial strategy has made a comeback from that strange land we call the 1970s. It’s all the rage. The government has named a department after it. Jeremy Corbyn is so keen to set that strategy free of European rules and regulations, he wants to leave the single market over it. … Continued

Labour market
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Low pay
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Pay
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Minimum wage

How did firms pay for the big pay rise in 2016? Through productivity and price rises, not job losses

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2016 marked the introduction of a big, controversial new player on the political economy scene, whose influence is set to grow and grow over the next four years. No, this isn’t a blog about President-Elect Trump. For millions of low earners across the UK, another development has had an even bigger impact. The National Living … Continued

Labour market
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Low pay
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Pay
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Minimum wage

No jobs-killer as employers take a ‘suck it and see’ approach to the National Living Wage

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With all the economic and political tumult of the past couple of weeks, the launch of the National Living Wage (NLW) already feels a long time ago. But it’s only been three months since the government’s flagship labour market policy came into force. As with Brexit, we’ll need to wait before judging the full impact … Continued

Low pay
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Pay
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Minimum wage

Clearing up the confusion around the National Living Wage

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The National Living Wage, the blockbuster announcement of the Summer Budget, is a hugely welcome move on low pay. But we’re now four months away from its introduction and, as a new government poll reveals, many businesses are not prepared for it. The awareness raising campaign launched today is a good start towards addressing that … Continued

Matthew Whittaker
Labour market
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Low pay
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Pay
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Minimum wage

Lifting the wage floor increases the urgency for securing productivity gains

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The welcome introduction of a significantly higher wage floor from April 2016 is set to boost the pay of around 6 million workers. But it will pose adaptation challenges for employers, particularly in lower paying sectors such as retail and hospitality. A simple thought exercise implies that maintaining a broad adherence to the international relationship … Continued

Low pay
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Pay
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Minimum wage
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Living Wage

The national living wage alone is not enough

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A pay rise for six million people sounds great but the new national living wage is a policy that that cannot stand in isolation. The National Living Wage is set to bring much-needed pay rises – but it can’t solve our living standards challenge alone. After an unprecedented six-year pay squeeze, wage levels have finally started … Continued

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