Most private sector workers can expect a 2pc pay rise - Ibec
Workers at three-quarters of private sector companies can look forward to a 2pc pay rise next year and those in high-tech and large firms will get the biggest boost.
Ibec's latest pay survey reveals that the upward trend for wages will continue at the same rate as the past four years in 2018.
Some 75pc of companies now plan to increase salaries. At the start of the year, 71pc said they would.
The average increase in recent years has been 2.2pc.
But the business body warned it would not be a case of pay rises all round as a "significant" number of companies would not raise wages.
It said that due to low inflation and tax cuts, there was strong wage growth going on and this needed to be reflected in workers' expectations of pay rises.
Ibec director of employer relations Maeve McElwee said tax cuts in the Budget would reduce the burden on average earners. She said 43pc of companies planned to increase staff numbers next year and 67pc of the jobs will be permanent.
"It is encouraging to see the confidence in a strong and growing labour market with unemployment now back to 6.1pc this year," she said.
"It's crucial that we stay on this positive path and don't jeopardise these very real and important successes. Most companies are in a position to award modest pay rises, but many face significant and heightened uncertainty as a result of Brexit and currency pressures.
"This needs to be reflected in wage expectations."
The total pay bill at 71pc of companies is expected to increase next year, which is 2pc ahead of this year due to pay rises and recruitment.