Earnings fall but building workers enjoy mini-boom
MOST people are earning marginally less than they were a year ago, although construction workers have enjoyed a mini-boom in wages.
New figures from the Central Statistics Office show that average weekly earnings fell by nearly €3 a week between the first quarter of 2013 and the same period of 2014.
People earned an average of €689.88 a week in early 2014 compared with €692.54 a year earlier.
The drop is down to a slightly lower hourly rate.
However, the fall in earnings was not evenly spread as workers in seven out of 13 sectors of the economy enjoyed increases.
Building workers fared best with a 10pc increase in wages which rose to €704 on average.
Transport and storage workers also saw a 5.5pc increase, while IT staff, financial workers, estate agents and professionals enjoyed smaller gains.
Education was the sector with the biggest dip in earnings of 2.7pc while those in health and social work, arts and administration also suffered losses.
Private sector workers enjoyed minor gains averaging €4.36 a week in their earnings over the last year.
However, public sector workers were hit with a €16 a week cut in pay on average.
Despite this drop, public sector earnings remained much higher than those in the private sector.
Public sector workers now earn just under €900 a week on average compared with €628 in the private sector.
Semi-state workers bucked the trend for falling public sector pay, with their average earnings rising to €990 a week.