Wage rates and hours worked rise

Last updated 11:18 05/02/2013

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Private sector wage rates rose 1.9 per cent last year, outpacing public sector wages which rose 1.5 per cent.

Official figures also showed a 0.7 per cent lift in full time jobs in the December quarter, while part time jobs fell almost as much. Total paid hours rose 0.6 per cent in the last three months of the year.

Statistics New Zealand figures just out show total labour cost index wage rates, including overtime, for both private and public sector workers, rose 1.8 per cent in the past year. That included a 0.5 per cent lift in the December quarter.

For those who actually got a pay rise, the mean increase for all surveyed salary and wage rates that rose in the December 2012 quarter was 3.0 per cent, compared with 3.1 percent in the September 2012 quarter.

The latest mean increase is the lowest since a 3.0 per cent increase in the September 2000 quarter. Of all pay rates surveyed, 55 per cent showed annual increases in the year to December 31.

Meanwhile, Quarterly Employment Survey figures also out today showed that average hourly earnings for ordinary time, excluding overtime, rose 2.6 per cent in the year. This followed a rise of 2.8 per cent in the year to the end of the September 2012 quarter.

The number of filled jobs rose 0.4 per cent in the December quarter, from the previous quarter.

Full-time jobs rose by 0.7 per cent while part-time jobs fell 0.6 per cent. The overall result of these movements was a 0.4 percent rise in full-time equivalent jobs (FTEs). Seasonally adjusted total paid hours rose 0.6 per cent over the same period.

Official unemployment statistics will be released on Thursday.

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- BusinessDay.co.nz

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