IT staff remain top dogs as earning disparities remain

CSO figures show construction workers are still experiencing sharp falls in basic pay

CSO numbers reveal average weekly earnings  rose in most sectors of the economy over the past 12 months.CSO numbers reveal average weekly earnings rose in most sectors of the economy over the past 12 months.

IT staff are benefitting most from the upturn in the economy while those in construction are being paid less than they were a year ago.

The latest earnings figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) earnings rose in most sectors of the economy rose during the past 12 months.

However, they also reveal big disparities in pay rates between sectors.

 Average weekly pay across all sectors, which includes overtime and bonuses, stood at €697.52 at the end of June, up 1.8 per cent on the €684.97 recorded a year earlier.

IT staff remain the best-paid employees in the economy with average weekly earnings of €1,067, up 4.4 per cent or €44.93 year-on-year.

Those working in the administrative and support services sector, which includes rental and leasing businesses, enjoyed the biggest jump of any sector with average earnings rising 8.8 per cent to €524.However, this was barely half that made by IT professionals.

Construction workers, meanwhile, experienced a 5.8 per cent contraction in weekly pay, which earnings falling from €743 to €700 during the period.

Those working in the accommodation and food services sector earned just €324 on average per week, the lowest of any sector.

However, this may reflect greater levels of part-time and seasonal work in the sector.

The figures reveal private sector workers enjoyed a 2.3 per cent rise in weekly earnings in the 12 months to June while public sector pay remained static.

However, average weekly pay for public sector workers was €918.24 compared to just €631.81 for their private sector equivalents.

On an hourly basis, private sector pay rose by 2.2 per cent to €19.90 while public sector pay fell 1 per cent to €28.25.

The average hourly wage across all sectors, which exclude irregular payments such as bonuses, rose from €21.53 to €21.85, representing an increase of 1.5 per cent.

Education staff earned the most per hour at €33.86 ahead of IT and finance staff on €26.96 and €26.92 respectively.

The largest increase was recorded in the administration and support activities sector, increasing 12 per cent from €15.48 to €17.33 per hour.

The construction sector saw the largest annual fall in average hourly earnings, decreasing 3.1 per cent from €19.88 to €19.26 per hour.

In the five years to the second quarter of 2015 overall average hourly earnings in the economy fell by 0.5 per cent from €21.95 to €21.85, reflecting the downturn and the more recent recovery.

The largest percentage increase was recorded in the information and communication sector, rising nearly 16 per cent from €25.59 to €29.67.

The largest percentage decrease in average hourly earnings over the same period was recorded in the human health and social work sector, where rates fell 7 per cent from €23.81 to €22.14.