Issue date

Average pay in Wales fell by over £300 in real terms last year, according to new analysis published by Wales TUC today (Monday) to mark the beginning of Fair Pay Fortnight which runs between 16 February and March 1.

This means that the average full-time employee wage in Wales has fallen in real terms by £2,217 since 2010 – over £40 a week.

The TUC says that UK workers have endured the longest real wage squeeze since records began in the 1850s and that even with inflation falling sharply in recent months at current rates of progress it will still take years for wages to recover to their pre-recession levels.

While average pay for workers in Wales fell by 8.3 per cent in real terms between 2010 and 2014, pay for FTSE 100 bosses shot up by 26 per cent over the same period, says Wales TUC.

FTSE 100 chief executives saw their pay increase, on average, by £700,000 in real terms between 2010 and 2014.

The average wage for a FTSE 100 CEO in 2014 was £3,334,000 – 137 times the average annual wage in Wales.

The TUC estimates that it took a FTSE 100 CEO less than two working days, on average, to earn what most full-time workers in Wales earn in a year.

The TUC is organising Fair Pay Fortnight to raise awareness about pay inequality and to campaign for a higher minimum wage, greater extension of the living wage and higher pay settlements in the public and private sectors.

A number of events and activities have been planned across the country including street stalls in Cardiff, Wrexham and Swansea.

Wales TUC General Secretary Martin Mansfield said: “Despite growth returning, 2014 was another miserable year for living standards in Wales with real wages falling by over £300 in real terms.

“Even though inflation has fallen sharply in recent months, it is still going to take years for people’s earnings just to recover to their pre-recession levels.

“It is different story though for those at the top. Senior City executives have seen a huge boost in their fortunes since the election as their earnings have skyrocketed.

“This is why we are organising Fair Pay Fortnight, to raise awareness about pay inequality and demand a sustainable recovery in which everybody shares.”


Changes in the median annual real earnings of full-time employees 2010-2014


Change Since 2010 (£)

Change Since 2010 (per cent)

Change Since 2013 (£)

Change since 2013 (per cent)



United Kingdom





North East





North West





Yorkshire and The Humber





East Midlands





West Midlands















South East





South West















Northern Ireland





Source: Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings, RPI adjusted. All real values are reported are in April 2014 prices, using April RPI: All Items Index values

Changes in FTSE 100 CEOs real earnings 2010-2014


Change Since 2010 (£)

Change since 2010 (per cent)

FTSE 100 Chief Executives




Source: IDS Directors’ Pay Report 2014/15, data from Graph 1.2: CEO and employee median earning trends data 2000 to 2014.

FTSE 100 CE0 pay, compared to median earnings

Wales median wage in 2014


How many more times the Wales median wage FTSE 100 earned in 20141


Hours it took CEO to earn median wage in Wales2


Working days it took CEO to earn median wage in Wales3


1This value is FTSE 100 median annual wage divided by regional full time median annual wage and rounded to the nearest whole number.

2This value assumes a standard working week of 37.5 hours per week for 52 weeks per year. Not taking any leave into account, this comes to 1950 standard working hours per year. The FTSE 100 median hourly wage was therefore estimated at £1,709.74, which is the FTSE 100 median annual wage divided by 1950.  Finally, each regional and/or national full time median annual wage was then divided by this hourly rate and rounded to the nearest hour.

3This value took the number of hours it would take a FTSE 100 CEO to earn the full-time median annual wage divided by a standard 7.5 hour work day and was rounded to the nearest tenth of a day.

- Fair Pay Fortnight will run between Monday 16 February and Sunday 1 March.

- The Fortnight is part of the TUC’s Britain Needs a Pay Rise campaign and will feature a series of events across England and Wales to raise awareness about low pay, pay inequality and falling living standards. For more information please visit

- Follow Wales TUC on twitter @WalesTUC


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