Wednesday 21 February 2018

Financial sector pay rose during crisis

Financial services staff saw their pay increase during the financial crisis
Financial services staff saw their pay increase during the financial crisis
Sarah Stack

Sarah Stack

MORE than six out of 10 workers in Ireland's financial services got a pay rise during the economic crisis.

Another 60pc of public sector employees also saw their salaries increase between 2010 and 2011, while one-third had their earnings slashed.

The wage hikes have been uncovered by academics from NUI Maynooth, who examined new data compiled by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) from P35s during 2006 to 2011. The P35s include details on each employee including earnings, credits and taxes paid which are sent to Revenue by the employer – however, identifiable data was not given to the CSO.

The research, seen by the Irish Independent, showed more than 75pc of people enjoyed a rise in earnings for the three years before the crash.

But as the crisis took hold – from 2008 to 2010 – the proportion of workers being hit with pay cuts increased to more than 50pc.

Professor Donal O' Neill said figures for the finance sector "jumped out" with employees still experiencing some of the largest earnings growth during the crisis period.

"You would have expected it to have rowed back during the crisis, but our evidence is that didn't happen," said NUI Maynooth's professor of economics.

The data examined pay freezes, cuts and rises across 16 areas, and highlights extensive pay cuts – up to 80pc – in public administration, education and health from 2008 to 2010 due to the pension levy and Croke Park pay agreement. Pay rates rose again for the majority the following year.

It also showed that while thousands of construction workers lost their jobs, those who remained also saw their incomes slashed with more than 60pc suffering pay cuts.

Finance sector prospered during crisis: Business, Pages 38 & 39

Irish Independent

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