Average weekly earnings remain stable

AVERAGE WEEKLY earnings stood at €687

AVERAGE WEEKLY earnings stood at €687.84 in the second quarter of the year, new data from the Central Statistics Office showed yesterday – almost identical to the same period last year.

Average hourly earnings were also broadly stable, at €21.91.

Over the same period, the number of hours worked a week was also static, at 31.4.

Davy Stockbrokers said in a note the figures represented a steadying in earnings patterns. “The data are consistent with our broad view that the Irish labour market is slowly stabilising, both in terms of employment and earnings.”


The headline figures, however, masked differences in pay patterns in different sectors. In the public sector, weekly earnings rose by 2.8 per cent between the second quarter of the year and the same period last year. Average weekly earnings in the public sector stood at €918.99.

In the private sector, where average weekly earnings were €611.66, a decline of 0.5 per cent year on year was recorded.

Both sectors have seen a decline in recent times, with the public sector falling by 1.2 per cent in the past four years and the private sector declining by 3.9 per cent over the same time.

The figures do not take into account deductions such as PRSI, tax and the public sector pension levy that came into effect in 2009.

A more detailed breakdown of the figures show that in seven of 13 sectors, weekly earnings showed a rise over the year. The largest increase was recorded in the professional, scientific and technical sector, which increased by 5.9 per cent.

On the other hand, in the accommodation and food service sector, average weekly earnings fell by 5.7 per cent. In the construction sector, earnings were down 5.4 per cent on the year.

Over the year, public sector numbers fell by 6.3 per cent to 380,800.

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien is an Irish Times business and technology journalist