Wages still growing faster than price rises

Pay growth in the UK has slowed again, but remains above the rate of inflation, official figures show.

Regular earnings (excluding bonuses) in the three months to November 2023 rose by 6.6% year-on-year, compared with 7.3% a month earlier, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

Including bonuses, pay grew by 6.5%.

“While annual pay growth remains high in cash terms, we continue to see signs that wage pressures might be easing overall,” said Liz McKeown, ONS director of economic statistics. “However, with inflation still falling more quickly, earnings continued to grow in real terms.”

UK inflation currently stands at 3.9%, a more than two-year low.

The data also showed a fall in the number of job vacancies for a record 18th consecutive period.

The estimated number of vacancies in October to December 2023 was 934,000, a decrease of 49,000 from the previous three months and down by 226,000 from a year ago. However, vacancies are still above levels seen before the pandemic.

Unemployment was largely unchanged at 4.2%.