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Pay rising? No, it’s falling

Despite what the Tories, the bosses and the mainstream media say our workers are suffering real term wage cuts
Issue 2863
pay The Bank of England Tories

The Bank of England

Sometimes very basic truths have to be endlessly repeated. Wages are going down once price rises are taken into account, not rising. You wouldn’t know that from the headlines on Tuesday. “Record pay rises fuel fresh inflation fears,” said the BBC.  “Public sector pay growth surges to 22-year high,” said the Telegraph.

“Record UK pay growth adds to pressure for interest rate rise,” was the Guardian’s effort.

They were reporting new figures from the Office for National Statistics that showed earnings have grown by 7.3 percent in the three months to May compared with a year earlier. That’s more than “experts” predicted, and far higher than bosses and ministers want. 

But it’s well below even the government’s flawed inflation figure.  And it’s much less than the more accurate RPI inflation rate of 11.3 percent.

So what you can buy with your pay is still falling. It’s a lie to use words like “growth” and “rise”. It’s a political manoeuvre. Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey and Tory chancellor Jeremy Hunt quickly lined up to demand that workers should stop asking for higher pay.

And we can guarantee that bankers and ministers will keep jacking up interest rates—whatever the cost. Already unemployment is starting to rise. Don’t believe the hype and the distortion. Workers and trade unions should fight for real pay rises, not accept more cuts.

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