TUC calculation for the real wage loss since the economic crash of 2008 shows that South West workers are the biggest losers outside of London.
The worst pay squeeze in 200 years
The analysis shows that as a result of pay not keeping pace with the cost of living, the average South West worker has lost out on £14,400 in real earnings since 2008.
Workers are suffering the longest real wage squeeze in more than 200 years, with average pay packets not set to recover to their 2008 level until 2024.
The UK is one only of two advanced economies (along with Italy) where real wages are still lower than a decade ago.
Cumulative real wage loss by UK region/nation 2008-2018
|Yorkshire and The Humber||-£12,680|
Source: ONS Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings
The South West TUC has studied the statistics at local authority level and it shows some stark results.
Workers in North Somerset will be feeling the pinch even more this Christmas having lost an astonishing £106 a week in real terms ,a 21% fall since the crash of 2008.
It is often women workers who have taken the brunt of the pay squeeze. Working women in Taunton have lost £72 a week in real terms, 20% since 2008 compared to men who have lost £27 a week – a 6% cut in real terms.
For women workers in Dorset the loss is £43 a week in contrast to men who have had a slight increase of £5 a week – a 1% rise in real terms. The effect has widened the gender pay gap up to 18.7% compared to the national average of 17.1%
The lowest paid part of the region is Torbay where women have lost £70 a week 23% in real terms. Men in Torbay have lost £37 a week – a 10% cut in real terms.
Working women in the Forest of Dean have lost £63 a week, 21% in real terms with men losing out with pay packets £41 less a week – an 8% cut in real terms widening the gender pay gap in the area to 26.1% compared to the national average of 17.1%.