Public sector pay rising faster than the private sector

A new report has found that average UK pay rises remained constant at three per cent in the three months to February.

The low rate of pay hikes has now stayed unchanged for 11 months, and is set to continue for the foreseeable future, according to the Industrial Relations Services (IRS) report.

However, it also revealed that the public sector is awarding higher pay rises than the private sector, at 3.5 per cent.

Over the last year, the public sector has experienced a series of industrial disputes, resulting in generous pay settlements for groups including council workers and fire fighters.

In both cases, however, the rates of pay inflation exceed the general rate of price inflation – on both the RPIX and CPI measures.

Sheila Attwood of the IRS said: “Judging by the review bodies’ recommendations and the Government’s desire to keep pay rises within manageable budgetary bounds, three per cent will also become the benchmark for many public sector pay deals this spring.”

“This is significantly down on the 3.5 per cent median seen over the past year and will further add to the influences keeping the ‘whole-economy’ median at three per cent.”

Improvements in manufacturing awards mean that engineers are experiencing similar pay rises of three per cent, suggested the IRS.