Britain endures biggest drop in wages among world's richest countries


Workers in the UK have suffered the biggest fall in wages among leading countries in the past few years, a new study shows.

Between 2007 and 2015, wages fell in real terms by 10.4%, a drop equalled only by Greece, according to the TUC.

The fall is the biggest among leading OECD countries, including Portugal, Spain, France, Germany and Ireland, said the report.

The UK, Greece and Portugal were the only OECD countries where real wages, a measure which takes inflation into account, fell.

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: "Wages fell off the cliff after the financial crisis and have barely begun to recover.

"As the Bank of England recently argued, the majority of UK households have endured a 'lost decade of income'.

"People cannot afford another hit to their pay packets. Working people must not foot the bill for a Brexit downturn in the way they did for the bankers' crash.

"This analysis shows why the government needs to invest in large infrastructure projects to create more decent, well-paid jobs. Other countries have shown that it is possible to increase employment and living standards at the same time."

A Treasury spokesman said: "This analysis ignores the point that following the Great Recession the UK employment rate has grown more than any G7 country, living standards have reached their highest level and wages continue to rise faster than prices - and will be helped by the new National Living Wage.

"But there is more to do to build an economy and country that works for everyone not just a privileged few, and we are determined to do exactly that."