East Midlands pay packet slump to £90 less than 2008, says TUC

Lee Barron

Pay packets are worth over £90 a week less in some parts of the East Midlands than in 2008, according to new analysis published by the TUC.

The analysis shows which local authority areas have suffered the biggest hit to real wages (wages once the cost of living has been taken into account) since the crash.

People working in South Derbyshire have the most ground to make up. They are still earning 19% less in real terms than a decade ago – the equivalent of £91 a week.

The next worst areas are Bolsover where real wages are still down by 17%, followed by Mansfield (-15%) and Charnwood (-14%).

There have been sharp falls across the region in both poor and affluent areas.

Real wages are still lower than a decade ago in 35 of the region’s 45 local authority areas. And only three areas (East Lindsay, Hinckley and Bosworth and Rushcliffe) have seen the value of wages increase by more than 5% since 2008.

The TUC says that its analysis shows that as a result of pay not keeping pace with the cost of living, the average East Midlands worker has lost out on £12,920 in real earnings since 2008.

UK workers are suffering the longest real wage squeeze in more than 200 years, with average pay packets not set to recover to their 2008 level until 2024.

The UK is only of two advanced economies (along with Italy) where real wages are still lower than a decade ago.

TUC Regional Secretary Lee Barron said: “The government has failed to tackle Britain’s cost of living crisis. As a result many families across the East Midlands will be worse off this Christmas than a decade ago.

“While pay packets have recovered in most leading economies, wage growth in the UK is stuck in the slow lane.

“Ministers need to wake up and get wages rising faster. This means giving all public sector workers the pay rise they have earned and giving unions the right to bargain in more workplaces, and it means boosting the minimum wage to £10 an hour as soon as possible.”